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First weeks in assisted living for MCI
Posted: Wednesday, April 27, 2022 2:29 PM
Joined: 5/5/2021
Posts: 115

We are now in week 4 with my mom in assisted living. I wanted to go home to my own family but there are still so many things to do. I spent the whole weekend sorting out endless endless clutter, barely made a dent, including a jar of apparently my baby teeth! Yuck. and letters from dead people, and am now depressed. Today I realised I need to put some documents and jewellery into the safe deposit box, and also that I have now looked everywhere possible and the single remaining key to said box is gone. So the bank has had to be persuaded to drill it out which will take a week to organise and cost money - they keep telling me that, as if I have a choice in the matter!- mom was bound and determined to lose that key so I gave it to my aunt along with a house key and garage opener -but AUNT now denies all knowledge and gets annoyed if I ask. Amazingly she visited the house every week last year, yet doesn’t have the keys to get in? Yeah, right. She did the same with a box of documents but then tripped over it in her attic and, unusually, apologised and gave it back. But yes cognition is suspect in aunt too, now. I am so alone. The fun never stops! I will never trust anyone over 80 not to be daft, ever again.

I’m getting the same inefficient and annoying behaviour from the home insurance company, no, mom is not coming back, no I don’t have someone to live in the house so yes I do indeed need a quote for unoccupied insurance and yes, I am aware it costs money!  I have asked several times, for weeks now, so maybe time to change companies, hmmm? I’ve got one from another company in passing. She has not been with them for all these years for their dynamism.

Anyway, mom is not delighted with AL (for no good reason that I can see) but is living in the moment and back to her normal level of apathy. That is better than complaining and phoning repeatedly leaving plaintive messages! The staff there have noticed and stepped up their game, to call and take her to more activities etc. I think they thought I had already left for my home so that is encouraging, that they didn’t step down instead! Without my beady eye. 

They have also reported she is chatting  engagingly with other residents and going to exercises every day, despite her comments to me to the contrary and from my own observations, and her clearly being so late she misses things altogether then reports they were cancelled, and frequently not knowing what time or day it is again, I believe the staff. 

Mom did notice there is a mother’s day Brunch scheduled at the facility, so I don’t think I can go just before that anyway as I had half-planned.   Hoping to resolve more issues by then, or maybe just say **** it, I’m off! Let it burn down, I want my own life back.



Posted: Wednesday, April 27, 2022 3:25 PM
Joined: 9/10/2021
Posts: 271

((hugs))  You'll get there with the stuff.  Do make time for you... soon!

Sorry about aunt.

MN Chickadee
Posted: Thursday, April 28, 2022 8:20 AM
Joined: 9/7/2014
Posts: 1508

I had to insure an unoccupied home once too. What worked was going with an insurance broker who sells many brands of insurance, not just American Family, for example. He found one that would do it, I believe it was Farmers. It did indeed cost more but I only needed it for a few months until I could sell the home. You may indeed need to switch to a different company. 

Hang in there. You have done the incredibly hard job of moving her. There is always a lot of emotion and exhaustion around that. Be gentle with yourself. Things will come together eventually. It won't always be like this. Do you think maybe the key will turn up as you continue to clean the house out? Perhaps not. Years later my father is still searching for a number of things my mother hid somewhere in the house. 

Posted: Thursday, April 28, 2022 1:19 PM
Joined: 5/5/2021
Posts: 115

Well some further small steps forward. I have got the dentist to respond to my email and agree not to send invoices for her upcoming appointment to the empty house, NOR to ask her because that is where she will tell them to send it. I have set up an alternative.  Their front of house staff haven’t impressed but she is used to the place and I have arranged a carer to take her. Kind of a dry run for the much more complex cancer appointment the following week.

Yesterday evening I found yet again the meds not taken in the box, and was treated to an announcement that no, she hadn’t used the shampoo I brought her, and she was going to leave her hair uncut and unwashed so that she looks like an old witch!  No, she is not going to try the facility hairdressers which is across the hall, because last year someone else (thousands of miles away and nothing to do with me at all) cut it wrong.  Really out of character, I think it’s another form of protest at being “incarcerated in an institution”.

I think I will stop visiting at sundown!  And will have to have a heart to heart with the facility before I leave about meds and this new defiance. I may have my own announcement...I’m not going to the Mother’s Day Buffet with an old witch! Sounds mean, but try me!!  

I’m now going out for a walk with a friend and her dog, it’s cold and wet but every single outing I have had for over 6 months has involved zero exercise and maximum calories, and the effects are showing.  Time to get my own act together!!

Posted: Saturday, May 14, 2022 2:22 AM
Joined: 5/5/2021
Posts: 115

We are at the end of week 6, I have returned to my home region if not actual home yet, by way of daughters who are students. It has been great to see them and treat them to a meal out, and support them as they finish their school year, after an absence of 8 months, and without a PWD in tow whose needs and wants trump theirs every few minutes. They have been very patient but it’s sad this will be their memory of their grandma.

Mum has been up and down mentally and right now is down, the facility keeps calling my aunt which is a bit annoying. I have 2 phone numbers, and one is a US cellphone so I guess they don’t understand that they can call me even though I am outside the US. That, or it didn’t get through because I was in actual transit brought a low coverage area, but they didn’t leave a message.

The aunt seems to wind mum up, she is prone to negativity. One nephew is also trying to support but he is so self-centred, he buys mum gifts which she is not that interested in, then expects effusive thanks from her. And keeps offering to take her out, but doesn’t. (He is so obese he can barely walk himself, and has a huge truck she would not be able to climb into).  She doesn’t particularly enjoy his company as he talks for hours about himself and his interests. He’s one of “those” people.

I think I managed to calm them all down a little with emails and phone calls, and enlisted some more help from a relative from mum’s side who knows them all and is singing the same tune too - “Mum is safe if not happy and is actually eating most meals and doing activities  most days - what she wants is to go back in time, to when she was busy having fun and had dad alive and well, to drive her and keep her company. Sadly none of us can give her that.”

I’m going back in a couple months with one daughter to see what is what and hopefully prepare the house for rental, to help pay for the assisted living.

Posted: Saturday, May 14, 2022 10:42 PM
Joined: 4/7/2019
Posts: 353

Hey there Fairyland - sending you positive thoughts!

The never ending laundry list of tasks, how well I know it. Just know that over time the list does diminish - it's not ever going to be zero (at least that's not been my experience), but it does become more manageable.

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