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Today in My History

2000:  Doing the Best I Can
2001:  So Long for Awhile
2002:  The Great American Pastime
2003:  Top Dogs
2004:  The Rock
2005:  The Tourist
2006:   Ewww

2007: The Perks

2008:  Cujo
Well Trained

42nd Stree

Books Read in 2010
Updated: 9/9
The Art of Racing in the Rain"

Recipes for Cousins Day Drinks
(updated 3/17/10)


A Taste of Uncle Vito's from Bev Sykes on Vimeo.

On You Tube

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Mitzi Gaynor said WHAT?

Spirit of '43
Ned's Video for Bri's 2nd birthday
No You Can't (John Boehner)
Jim Brochu closes NASDAQ
Stupid, Callous, Homophobic, Hateful Legislation

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Cousins Day, August 2010

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10 September 2010

For someone who earns money by communicating ideas in print that are published and passed around to thousands of people, I sure have a lot of difficulty in getting my meaning across from time to time.

Case in point my entry earlier this week, which was designed to express my worries about my mother and to elicit information from people who have dealt with the deterioration of parents so that I have an arsenal of tricks at hand when/if things with my mother begin to escalate.

Someone read my entry and absolutely exploded on my Facebook wall.  There was a barrage of messages that were so angry that I deleted them all and decided to have this discussion by e-mail instead.

The writer seemed to feel that I was planning on dragging my mother off to some horrible home and forcing her to stay there until she died and that I was hoping that she would die.  In explanation, I wrote, in part,

I worry about her. I'm not thinking she's going to need to be moved anywhere in the foreseeable future, but she's 91 and she is getting worse. Those of us who see her all the time for extended periods of time have all noticed it. It's not like she's ready to be put in a home. I hope she can stay in her house for a long time. BUT, she IS 91 years old. She DOES have serious short-term memory loss and I worry about her a lot.

And yes, I do hope she either dies in her sleep, or sitting up in front of CSI drinking a martini. Of course I think about the manner of her death. We have been watching Walt's mother die a slow death (she's 97) for many years. She is now in a convalescent hospital but she has gone from apartment in an adult community to assisted living, to a different level of assisted living, to hospital, and now to a place where she will eventually die. I can't think of a worse way for my mother to die, than going piece by piece, bit by bit, with more and more of her independence being whittled away. So yes, I hope she dies in her sleep.

The response came quickly:

I suppose I am horrified at the thought of your Mom in some hideous home wasting away waiting to die. Can't you get someone to stay with her? There's got to be a better solution than just sticking her in one of those homes. If, as you say, you are her best friend maybe you cousins could all get together and voice your concerns and present options to her situation instead of opting for the "home". She's not an unreasonable person as far as I know, I know she's smart bright and at this point ,yes forgetful.but she doesn't deserve to be pushed into something she isn't ready for. I felt horrified at your writings it seemed like you were so angry and there was only one solution to solve "the problem". I hope that whatever you all decide for her you at least have the courtesy to talk it out and do it with love and dignity. For myself, and my family, I've found that it helps to have a counselor or someone impartial to help sort things out.it really helped me with mom because we had a lot to figure out at the end of that journey.

I still didn't understand where all this decision that I was angry with my mother and that I was ready to put her in a terrible home.  The last time I remember being angry with my mother I was in grammar school and we were arguing about some of my homework.  I tried to communicate that.

You seem to have missed the point that she is not ready for such drastic action. I'm just seeing the beginning signs and am thinking ahead one, two, three years down the road, if the deterioration that we are BEGINNING to see continues to progress. I'm not angry in the least. I'm worried. She would hate having someone live with her and she would hate moving in with someone, especially me (my Aquarian lifestyle would be impossible for her Virgo sensibilities--we have both laughed about this often).

She would be better in a nice home where she could have her own apartment and where there would be someone who could check in on her regularly. Walt's mother has been in two such homes (one in Sacramento, one in Santa Barbara) and they were great. But this is way down the road. Definitely not now. We're certainly not going to kidnap her and force her to do anything she does not want to do. At this point I'm just exploring all of the options and asking for input on what I should watch for.

The response was

I haven't missed any of your points. You have completely turned around now and changed what you said in your blog. I am concerned because you seem to think the only option is putting your mom in a "home" for safety's sake. The way I read your blog was that you were upset at the way your Mom was acting the other night and you didn't know what to do about her. Of course you are concerned about her forgetfulness, but as I said before can you make arrangements now....such as speaking with her and other family members about the "future" . What are you worried about--that you might have to take care of her? I'd give anything to have my Mom here no matter how sick or forgetful she was and if it was HER choice to live at a home I would certainly abide by that. But really Bev, shouldn't it be HER choice about her future plans and shouldn't you as her daughter and having all these concerns that you've posted for all your friends and family to see help her make those plans now since its such a concern of yours? What I really didn't like about your posting is that you seem to think its ok for everyone to get involved in your drama over what to do about your Mom. Love and dignity indeed.

I gave up.  There was obviously no getting through to the writer.  The end result is wondering if I communicate as clearly as I think I do and try to do. 

This was a great mindset to be in just as I have to be starting to write an article for the newspaper.


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Buttercup found a bed for herself.



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