He wants to keep living at home and the time has come for a live in companion. That means making a lot more changes. My dear sister Gail has sorted out and made needed changes with all the various agencies that provide daily care for Dad and updated us all on the changes (hours and hours of work). My brother Rob lived with Dad for a year and dropped by last week to take his own furniture away. Helped with the changes.
Together with my sister-in-law Elaine, Dad and myself we sorted through our parents collections. We also went through, with Dad, all his clothing so some could be donated. Dad has aged into a size small mens and the medium shirts and slacks were just taking up space. My dear SIL Elaine and brother Tim have been living with Dad over the past few weeks to keep him safe and help him prepare for the changes too.
I won't say it was easy but more decisions about things were made and there is now less 'stuff' in his home, less to worry about. His care/companion has brought in her large fish tank and her plants and has two well behaved dogs that will be living with them too. This makes Dad's home suddenly alive with movement and interest.
Closets were cleaned out so the caregiver has her own spaces. Bedrooms were reorganized so her furniture could be moved in. Space and boundaries have been discussed and flexible guidelines have been put in place. We are hoping for one year with K, Dad's first companion/caregiver.
Dad has had morning and evening and housekeeping and personal caregivers for several years. Now he needs more help. The easing in of another 'different' has been slowly progressing in the last few weeks.
His companion/caregiver has been easing in toward full time, spending nights alternating with SIL because Dad needs to have someone overnight in case he falls.
Having a companion/caregiver means Dad is getting better nutrition, companionship and a watchful eye to help him when he needs help. He has gained needed weight, his color is better and he is accepting changes (again, so many changes over the past few years) so he can continue living in his own home. His physical self is a problem for him but his metal self continues to write and share on his blog (a recent post about Mom and their love story), email, correspond and continue to be active in his community and church life. Dad will be 94 in 3 weeks.
Joy (me), Mom and DS Gail
Our last outing (about 6 years ago) with Mom before she went into a Care Home
I took pictures of a few of my favorite memories of Mom's collectibles for this post, her bird ornaments, pink depression glasses and the silver overlay set that she always served cranberries in for Thanksgiving and Christmas are now in my china cabinet. Memories.
I am grateful for family and friends and the many care givers who are supporting Dad. He is very fortunate that he can choose to live in his home and is very aware of the efforts that go in to keeping him there. Aging in place. It takes a community to raise a child, it takes a community to keep a senior in their own home.
Thank you for visiting.