Two of my first cousins, along with their families, came to visit Mom this weekend. It was lovely of them to come, because they live a fair distance from us. We went to brunch at a tiny, sweet Belgian restaurant.
Mom came along. She really wanted to, although she mostly just sat, hunched over in her question mark posture, smiling. She ate pretty well, though, and that was nice to see.
But then, at the very end of the meal, she got up abruptly and said she had to go to the bathroom. I accompanied her there, since she needed help walking.
She was beginning to panic. I could tell that this was not going to be a simple trip to the bathroom.
I will spare you the horrible gross details, except to say that I spent a good deal of time soothing her, getting her ready to face the crowd, and tidying up the bathroom. Thank goodness we were the only party (except for one other couple) in the place, and that we really were ready to leave. I slipped the waiter twenty bucks and mentioned that they should mop the floor -- I cleaned it up so you couldn't really tell what happened, but even so.
It's clear now that she'll never live independently again. There's too much fuzz in her head and too little physical control.
I get so overwhelmed thinking about this stuff. She'll hate whatever we do; she hates that she's like this. We simply can't afford to have live-in, full-time help; we'll have to sell her home if she's to live in an assisted living or nursing home facility. Her savings will be gone within months -- more likely weeks -- and then the Medicaid hoops will be set on fire.
Then, along with my family, we'll hold hands and attempt to jump through them.
Meanwhile, I'll try to remember to breathe.