A Day of Two Extremes

Referencing yesterday’s blog, I didn’t sleep well last night; woke up early but got back to sleep eventually.

Went to work and for a change, in the midst of a rainy day, I actually wanted to work. I got to joke with coworkers, and the day seemed to be going well, as I got something accomplished for a change.

Went to my first counseling session and we mapped out a plan on how to deal with the stress of living life while being a caretaker. Went to the nursing home and talked to the business office. The more they talked about what had to be given up to pay for the expenses, how the funds in the bank couldn’t be used to pay for certain expenses, and the paperwork I needed to give them in determining if my mother would qualify for Medicaid. Right now her insurance was paying for her stay, but that was soon to be running out. If she was a private patient, the monthly fee would be over $11000 a month. If not, then she would have to “spend down” her funds (her monthly check alone is too high it appears for her to qualify for services and possibly Medicaid); in other words, whatever monies she had, from cash surrender value of her insurance policies to her monthly check would soon be theirs. The more they talked, the worse my stomach churned. I could feel my facial expression change, which represented the inner turmoil I felt. How are we to pay for anything regarding my mother’s stay here and how can I agree to this ‘financial arrangement’? I said from deep within: I can’t do this to her…

At the same time the social worker was speaking with my mother. When they finished, my mother was on her way to where I was in the business office, where I had finished signing some papers for them to get financial information, and of course my mother needed to sign some papers as well. I could tell just by her being there she was agitated, and as a result she refused to sign the papers until she had a chance to read them. Later, it was as though (what I thought was) the breakthrough conversation we had just days earlier never occurred. The distrust she had of me that she said was gone had returned, adding fuel to my frustration. I kept silently saying, God, I just don’t know what to do.

Moments later my mother and I spoke in another room, and distrust she felt was resonant in her vocal tone and in her words. I got up and went and entered the social worker’s office and closed the door as my mother walked back to her room. I suppose it did help a little to talk to her, but when I went to my mother’s room, she started to (what I call) talk dementia language, and I briskly said goodbye, grabbed my things and left…

Earlier in the day I felt like I could eventually get caught up at work, and feeling positive, but at the end of the day, I felt like I was back at the beginning when all this began with my mother, with no progress. Words were coming out of my mouth, but were bouncing off my mother’s brain, which was not deciphering their meaning. I thought I had a solution for my loved being taken care of, if only temporary. Now I don’t know. I have to November 6th to get all the paperwork together, or else there is high possibility she is coming home.

For those caregivers out there and for those just reading my journey, I could use your comments chock full of ideas regarding what to do, because I truly don’t have a clue right now.

Nevertheless,

Now unto him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all I could ever ask or think…

Ephesians 3:20

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