You can’t be there with mom, every minute, every day. If you are like my brothers and I, you each have your own lives to live with your own sets of details, successes and challenges to address. So you do all you can for the senior in your life. For us, it’s our mom.

Mom doesn’t ask for anything. Ever. She is content to be right where she is, taking each new day as any other day. We would like for her to read more, to keep her mind sharp, but she doesn’t. And you know, by the time someone has reached 80 something – you are not likely going to make them do anything. You can cajole, you can suggest, but you are very unlikely to force a change.

So we do all we can to make her life better. Sometimes, that means we allow our internal frustration to stay under wraps, so that we can sit and just be with her. And perhaps that is all she really needs. Maybe she just likes our company.

Like the most recent time I saw her, when I left the house (the same one I grew up in all those years ago), I left a note on the pillow of my old bed telling her I loved her and pinned a gift card to the local grocery store – the one she goes shopping at every Monday with her neighbors. She scolded me on the phone afterward. “I don’t want you spending your money like that.” But then she thanked me for being so thoughtful. And I know she likes having a little extra at the grocery store to buy those butter cookies she likes but most times won’t buy for herself.

I almost began the preceding paragraph, “Like the last time I saw her…” but changed it. I don’t want to think of any time I spend time with her as being my ‘last’ time to see her. And all of the legal machinations of the proper power of attorney documents and precise planning won’t mean anything after my brothers and I have had our ‘last’ visit with our mom.

So what is the point of this blog, and how does it relate to our power of attorney discussion? I’m not sure, but remember to give your mom what she really wants. Time with you. Maybe that’s worth more than all the legal advice I can ever give.