I realized this morning that I hadn’t posted yesterday’s thankful update.
Yesterday was a really busy day. It was my golf outing. It rained in the morning and I was losing hope, but by mid-afternoon the sun came out and it was absolutely gorgeous. It only sprinkled a teeny bit right at tee-off time. Everyone had fun and it was a good day.
But then I had to deal with stuff on a personal level. Long story that I will not bore you with, but we are searching for answers to assist with my dad. His caregiver (who we have never paid anything other than room and board) has gotten quite sick – sick enough that he was admitted to ICU. He had surgery this morning, but he has a long road to recover ahead of him. As of this morning there still was no certainty he would survive. And as sorry as I am for this man, my thoughts are with my dad and trying to figure out what we are going to do about him.
Dad is totally handicapped – he cannot do anything to take care of himself. He can’t get dressed or get in and out of bed, he can feed himself, but it must be cut up and prepared completely, he can’t get himself a glass of water. In all honesty, he needs to be in a nursing facility where there is care around the clock available for him.
We have spoken with home health care and all Medicare will pay for is one hour two days a week and then only for six weeks. Not really a good answer. So we are looking at private pay home health but even that isn’t a good answer – it must be in minimum blocks of two hours. What we really need is someone to get him out of bed, dressed, teeth brushed, toileting and in his power wheelchair. We already have a nurse (my sister’s best friend) who comes in twice or three times a week and tends to his personal hygiene needs. And we need someone to get him undressed, toileted and in bed every night. Even that still leaves us with needing someone to help him with the bathroom and lunch throughout the day and someone to stay with him all night.
Dad is not ready to give in and go to a nursing home even though that is exactly what needs to happen. My sister and I are the lucky ones to have to tell him that tonight. Dad’s idea is that we can magically find four or five individuals who are willing to do all those things every week for an indefinite period of time. We seriously doubt that his caregiver will ever be back – and we certainly cannot have him back if he isn’t 1000% healthy. We can barely take care of dad, let alone someone else.
So in the short term (I’m guessing less than a week), we have home health coming in the morning and my sister and I will get him in bed at night and I will move in for a bit and spend the night. Of course, it really causes me a problem since my schedule at work is that I need to be up getting ready around 6 every morning and home health doesn’t even show up at dad’s until 7 (and work is 45-50 minutes away for me from his house).
This is a really tough situation and I know that putting him in a nursing home will be like signing his death certificate. Somehow I need dad to think it is his idea. I’m not looking forward to our conversation tonight at all. Being a parent of an infant is hard work, being a parent of a 79 year old dad, is ten times harder.
But there are still things I am thankful for today – I’m thankful the sun is shining and it is absolutely gorgeous outside. I’m thankful my golf outing went so well. I’m thankful that I have this time with my dad. I’m thankful it is the weekend so maybe I can catch up on some sleep that I have really missed this week.