Sunday, March 22, 2015

Caregiver, Part One of Infinity

I'm becoming my mom's caregiver.  I've known for a long time and yet it is still sinking in.  I'm moving through the stages of grief and seem to be somewhere between depression/sadness and acceptance.
Last week she almost turned over her six figure retirement account to a couple of insurance shysters.  It it is the most horrifying thing that has happened so far.   It's a long story and I won't go into every detail.  She told me about it on the evening of the 13th and I freaked out.  We immediately googled them and saw they had been sued for fraudulent behavior against the elderly.  There were quite a few reviews from people who had been ripped off.  It was terrible.

It took me last weekend to convince her that it was a huge mistake.  I camped out at her house until they showed up Tuesday morning with the transfer papers -- they wouldn't make an appointment.

I kicked them out and surprised everyone in the family, including myself, how tough I was with them.

I'm still sick from the whole thing.  I can't believe people do that for a living.  They knew all the tricks of the trade.  They had her convinced she was going to get this huge bonus and earn a completely unrealistic interest.

You hear about this happening but to experience it.  If I hadn't camped out over there she probably would have signed the papers.

It ended by me demanding they never contact her again, getting all papers with her information (she had given them her social security number and account info) and following that up with a notarized letter demanding they destroy everything.

Last night she talked to me about meeting some friends this summer at a convention in San Antonio.  I'm actually working that convention and she wanted to stay with me.  Which I shot down because J16 may be coming and staying with me.

The thing is I know there is no way she can manage it.  She just can't.  She can't handle the airport alone or getting from the airport to the hotel and then getting around.  Not unless her friends are with her every moment.

She tells me she's not as bad as I think she is.  Even though last week driving home from a friend's house she drove an hour out of her way before she figured out she had been on the highway for much to long.

It is just sad.  It is heartbreaking.  I don't know how to handle it and yet I'm handling it.  I don't know what to do but I'm doing something.    I'm managing more and more and more.

Last night was the saddest thing for me so far.  Shooting down every argument she had about why she should go to San Antonio. Hearing the frustration and anger and sulking tone and having to stand strong.

This afternoon, like every Sunday, I'm headed over  to her house.  We have to finish up her taxes, go through some legal documents, and pay some bills. I have so much to do over there.  Taking care of her could be  part time job if I had the time.

In the next few weeks -- once the legal items and taxes are taken care of and we get home from spring break -- I will get serious about planning the next stage of her life.  I don't know what that's going to be.  All the options are hard.

All the options are hard.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Swimming at the Gym - Part Two?

I've been swimming at the gym several days a week.  At 5:00 in the morning.  Please, tell me how wonderful I am.

The things is there are a lot of people at the health club at 5:00 in the morning.  I thought I was all special and stuff the first day 'cuz I hauled my butt out of bed at 5:00 and was in the pool by 5:20.  Except when I walked in that first day there were already several people swimming.

Now my alarm is set for 4:40 and I get there at 5:00 and when I arrive there are more than a handful of cars in the parking lot and people walking on the track, on the machines and in the pool.

It turns out I'm not that special after all.

There's this whole world of people who seem to have been doing this all along.  I know.  Its CRAZY. It's like a way of life for them.

I feel like a little bit of an outsider, like a faker.  Like the other swimmers are going to call me out on it.  Most of them are like machines.  They never stop.  They do that flip turn thing and just go and go and go and go.    It's kind of a trip to watch out of the corner of my eye as I plod along and they zip past me.

I hope when I grow up I can be just like them.