It can be downright embarrassing. You are helping your parents in their golden years. Sometimes the help is deciding where the investments should be kept. For most of us, it is more down-to-earth decisions, like where will Mom & Dad stay if one of them needs physical or mental assistance.
Most recently, I was sitting with my mother while a nurse came in to visit with her. After remarking on how well she keeps her house (it is immaculate. . .I think dust stopped trying to collect at her house. It just moved on.), she began with the medical questions…you know, the ones that you were embarrassed by when your mother sat with you at the doctor’s office when you were too young to be in there alone. Now its my turn.
The days leading up to the visit were tense, as I have shared before. But the day of the visit, everything went just as planned. We met in the evening. Most long term care providers, including nursing homes, continuing care communities, and in-home care providers will work with your schedule. They understand that the senior for whom they may be offering care may be accompanied by someone with a nine-to-five job. My mother was as gracious as if the nurse was a long-time friend. She was a thorough professional with a very friendly demeanor. This is also something that I have seen is generally the rule, not the exception.
A two-hour visit passed without incident. Mom asked the questions she wanted to ask, and the nurse (who was dressed in plain clothes, not the starched-white “I’m coming to get you” outfit that you see in the movies) answered them to her satisfaction.
“I’m not signing anything or committing to anything tonight,” was mom’s strongest objection. It was met with “of course not,” from our nurse.
The evening concluded with more paperwork for mom and I to fill out. We needed to give her financial information before proceeding to any ‘next step.’ That was fine. Mom was in control of the process. And that is the point I hope to make with this blog entry.