Some Senior citizens maintain their mental acuity throughout their entire life span. I had a client with whom I had dinner on her 99th birthday. She was slower, yes, but mentally alert. She passed a few weeks later, a true lady to the end.

For others it is not so. My mother recently had a trip to the local ER. She was more confused than ever, though she did recognize and know my brothers and me as soon as she saw us. She had an infection which affected her thinking and her memory. She was not sure where she was when she arrived at the ER. My brother and I had a small list of issues that we, as her sons first and also as her legal agents, had to deal with.

There are varying levels of care for our seasoned citizens. Would mom require specialized care? And for how long? Would her insurance pay for the higher level of care? Would we be able to supplement her care?

We watched as she improved, day by day, until the hospital said she was stable and her insurance carrier said they would pay for three days of Physical Therapy. We had to pay the co-pay to the hospital, and in the midst of caring for mom, making sure the arrangements at the nursing were complete, thinking about the finances and the insurance.  The hospital (who was wonderful, thank you CRMC in Carlisle, PA) could have told us just about anything.

“Well, it says here that you will have to pay us $100 and learn to juggle.”

I would have simply picked up three oranges and began practicing my juggling. There is so much to think of at times like this, and you really want to focus on your loved one.

Mom is headed back to her assisted living facility – in sub-acute care – a term I learned from her doctor. I didn’t know they even had submarines at her facility!