One day I was cleaning my china cabinet and began happily reminiscing on the stories that live behind all the beautiful pieces inside the doors.
When my grandmother died, she left her entire estate to her eldest son, my Uncle Con. My father, the only other child, did not receive anything.
Leaving one and excluding the other would seem to create a situation ripe with ill will and bad feelings. On the contrary, my father was in full support of his mother's decision.
My greatest fear was that my father would die shortly after my mom died. Mom suffered for years from Alzheimer's disease and my dad was her most faithful caregiver and protector. What would happen when his reason for living was gone?
As the two year anniversary of my mothers death approaches, Dads still here. Hes a survivor and hes tough. I guess I already knew that. His presence and continued overall good quality of life at age 87 is a blessing.
One day, I remember walking to my mailbox and seeing invitations to a bridal shower addressed to Mother and me. Why I thought, would someone invite a 91 year old woman? I was stressed at the thought of her attending.
A close friend heard me out and said I was making excuses because, deep down, I really wanted to go alone. My friend understood my feelings. My Mother has poor eyesight its difficult for me to guide her inside dark restaurants the bathroom runs, etc. My friend asked me to step away for a day and ponder some guilt-free solutions.
Its retirement day.
On this day, you thought you would be happy. But, this retirement is not the one you planned for. This retirement features caregiving. An aging parent needs help and you're the one in the position to do just that.
How do you feel good about retiring from one career when caregiving seems to be the next one the one without benefits and a paid vacation?
We've got some tips to help you cope:
One weekend, my mother and I were at a family gathering. She was very excited all day and looked forward to seeing everyone.
During the course of the visit I noticed she became very quiet. I tried my best to gear the conversation to topics that she could participate in. Its difficult for her because she is the last living relative of her generation.
I printed my boarding pass and more than anything I wanted to go home. Work was waiting, my husband was waiting and I missed my familiar surroundings. I glanced across the room at my dad who had been feeling ill during my visit and made my offer one more time. Dad, I can stay a few more days. Even though he answered, Ill be alright. I could tell that he wanted me to stay.