Friday, September 2, 2011

Stuck In the Middle : Caring for Kids and Aging Parents

For the first time in a few weeks I got to spend some time with my mother today and yesterday. She repeats herself a bit, gets confused easily, and I'm concerned about some other things as well. As much as she and I go head to head on some issues, I can't help but think, should she move in with me?
  Out of five children, there are four of us still alive who can help her. My brother lives with her and does quite a bit, but he has his own limitations. He can handle most things, but in case of emergency, I'm not sure he'd be able to deal with it properly.  One sister lives out of state but visits when she can and calls to check on our mother. The other sister lives slightly closer than I do and she helps out as much as she can. I'm very thankful for all the family that keeps an eye on both my mom and brother. And yet... with the busyness of our own lives --taking care of family needs, sometimes it can be a few days in between visits, or in my case, a few weeks. And some things may not be noticed as quickly. 
  I'm still trying to figure all of this out. I want to know that she is safe and eating well and not getting stressed out because she can't remember a name or can't find something. This is new territory for me. I'm feeling my way around here. I know we all need to sit down and discuss all of this, but how? 
  Ideally I would love to have an acre or two of land where I could have a house, my mother could have her own place, and my brother could have a small place where we could all have our own space and yet I could keep an eye on them and make sure all is well, help them. But I'm not sure that will ever happen. I'm willing to bring them both into a home that we all share. I know it wouldn't be easy at first. But is it the right decision?

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