Adult children home for the holidays, like me, are back to our own daily routines with new worries and concerns. It was fun to see brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, Mom and Dad BUT. It was disconcerting to see how much older our parents seem this year.
Their house, OMG, well – you can tell that Mom needs to see an eye doctor about her vision problems. Her kitchen was always spotless but this year, spots and stains were everywhere – on her appliances, the floor, even her cabinets!
I took out Christmas Eve leftovers so everyone could make sandwiches. Again, another OMG, the mayo expired in 2015. Salad dressing, don’t even get me started, the bottle of ranch dressing is the same one from my college days.
Mom said she is so tired of cooking and Dad won’t tell her what he wants to eat. They go to the cafeteria most nights which is fine except they bring home leftovers. Squirreled away in the back of the refrigerator I found containers with: 2 teaspoons of moldy carrot raisin salad, a black blob that used to be a ½ banana, and 3 bites of meatloaf leftover from their “splurge” takeout from Boston Market. We persuaded her to try Meals on Wheels or even trying one of the meal delivery services. She said okay but I am certain that she won’t make the phone call.
John sneaked into the study while we all watched Christmas Vacation and found unpaid bills, open envelopes with new credit cards ready to be activated, and enough holiday cards and stickers from charities to last for years to come. I think Mom and Dad are struggling to keep up with monthly bill paying. They think they have to send money to every charity that asks but they need that money for themselves. We can’t even bring in a housekeeping service with all their financial information and credit cards out in the open for anyone to see!
We don’t know what to do. I’m so worried now. They won’t tell us what is going on when we call once a week. I guess I’ll have to start visiting every 1-2 months even though it is a 3 hour drive one way and what about my own housekeeping chores, the kids’ soccer practice and church activities.
This story about adult children home for the holidays may describe your own aging family situation or that of your co-worker or neighbor. The good news is that there are options and solutions to meet your loved one’s unique needs. The Aging Life Care Association (ALCA) can help you find a professional, certified Aging Life Care expert (also called a geriatric care manager). Most offer a free initial consultation.
Our experienced team of Aging Life Care Managers at Preferred Living Solutions serves Wake and surrounding counties. Whether you and your loved ones think it may be time to move Mom or Dad to assisted living, need help with monthly bill paying, need a knowledgeable representative at medical appointments that will ask questions and take notes to share with you, or answers about community resources, we can help.
Call us today at 919-554-0675.