Daily Life Is Getting In The Way!!! – Saturday, April 25, 2015

He’s Back!!

Yep, Bill decided to write a blog… must be really bored;-))

We have been at Huntington Beach for over a month now spending most of our time getting Nancy’s Mom prepared for the next major change in her life.  She is going to stop driving!!  As we have learned, so often her generation does not think about or discuss what will happen as she ages and how she wants to handle things.  There just is no planning;o((  

We hope to not do this to our children!!!

Mom will be 93 in October and is still in relatively good health.  However, many everyday things are becoming more difficult.  We got her taxes completed, arranged for all of her bills to be paid automatically every month, found a pharmacy that will deliver her prescriptions to her apartment and purchased large quantities of necessities so she doesn’t have to go to the store as often.  This is just the beginning, but we find she needs to adjust to change gradually.  She will continue to drive while we are away this summer.

When we get back in August, she will give the car to Nancy’s brother and learn to use the transportation provided where she lives.  We want to be here as she learns in case there is a problem or she needs assistance figuring out how to manage scheduling her time.  Grocery shopping is on Wednesday, banking and errands are on another day and hair appointments must be made a week in advance.  Doctor appointments are always a priority but they would prefer a little notice.  

We selected this Senior Living Center because they do provide so many services and that will allow Nancy and I to still do some traveling.  However, it is only good if she learns to use the services she is paying for each month!! 

All of these discussions and preparations have taken a lot of time and have been very stressful for Mom which then becomes stressful for us.  Lot’s of tears about loss of independence and fear of change.  The biggest fear of all is needing to move to assisted living. We have suggested many, many things to Mom over the last few years to get her thinking about how we will manage things if she needs more assistance. 

Assisted Living is not the only choice here.  They have in-home assistance also. Again… she just doesn’t want to think or discuss any of this.  Trying to get her to address the assistance issue, Nancy finally said to Mom, “There are only two ways life is going to play out for everyone: either you die a sudden death before you need assistance or you are going to live long enough to need assistance.”  Still she doesn't want to discuss it:o(

As I am writing this blog, very little of this information has gotten through to mom.  At times it is very frustrating, but we will do the best we can to see that Mom is safe and receives any care & assistance she needs.  Hopefully, Nancy and I will learn from this experience.  When we get to the point where our independence starts to disappear, let’s hope we have embraced where we are in life and prepared for the assistance we need.  Time will tell…..

Didn’t mean to ramble so…
but I’m sure that many our age are experiencing a similar situation.

Our weather has not been great, so not much going on at the beach;o((  But it has allowed us to get prepared for our summer and fall travels.  We bought a couple of fishing rods & reels and replaced two outside chairs.  Nancy replaced her very tired Panasonic camera with the newer model DMC-ZS30. We also got Baby the full spa treatment – a full 3-year maintenance service for the engine, chassis and generator.  Nancy also completed her annual maintenance with the Doctor, Dentist and Eye Doctor.  All that was needed is a new set of glasses – HOORAY!!!

Nancy has been working in the kitchen making most everything from scratch.  We are trying to really eliminate oil, salt and sugar from our food.  She has come up with some winners that even I like;o))  We have also stepped up our walking and bike riding which got lost this past winter.  We need to be in shape to keep up with our “younger” friends this summer when we go hiking, biking and kayaking!!!  We are so looking forward to the RV-Dreams Reunion Rally and returning to Maine this summer:o))

Just a couple more things need to be done before we pull out of South Carolina:  get the truck serviced, finish up as many of the details with mom as we can and spend some time with the Grandchildren at Ocean Lakes!!!  I’m getting a bad case of hitch-itch as this is the longest we’ve stayed at any park.  Longer than a month is too long for me.  Nancy’s better at this than I am. 
I’m ready to GO!!!


  1. Being children of elderly parents is certainly challenging but it sounds like you've got everything under control. I think the thing we all need to do is be patient, which is much easier said than done :) In my family, my mother responds better to "suggestions" from my brother, so we take definite advantage of that!! :)

    Looking forward to seeing you at the reunion! Safe travels!

  2. Yes Gail. That generation listens to men more easily than women. Glad I have a brother living in the same town as Mom.
    If you get hitch itch after a month Bill, try almost 7 months in the same park! We like it here but Gin's knee is about as good as it's going to get. Ready to roll!

  3. Bill, I'm in the same boat as you and Nancy with my dad, who is also 93. He's is pretty good shape for his age and still drives well, but has given up night driving. He lives alone in his house and says he wants to remain there, but that is driving our plans to have to build a house and take him in. I'm sure that will be quite a battle and it will impact our FT travels as well, but we'll do what we have to. It's very hard to watch him slow down and have more health struggles, as well as see his mind becoming less sharp than it used to be. The day is coming when his independence will have to end and we'll be stepping up to care for him.

    We're in complete agreement that we don't want to do this to our kids and have an exit strategy formulating in our discussions. Hang in there, you're doing a great job with all you've done to set Nancy's mom up with a relatively comfortable lifestyle. Don't feel guilty about taking off and enjoying time with your grandkids. They deserve to have time with you to do "stuff"! ;c)

  4. We were lucky with my mom. She quit driving on her own when her memory got too bad. But there was no planning and not acceptance of the disease she has. It did make it rough on the family.

  5. Excellent post Bill! Great summary of all you have accomplished lately and it's clearly a lot. You should do this more often. Love the picture. Me too. A month anywhere is a lot for me. Sounds like you have a fabulous summer you have planned. Envy you that for sure.

    Seems to me, you have done everything possible for mom. Hopefully she will gradually adjust. My dad would LOVE to be in her situation. He's in assisted living and has lost his eye sight and is losing his memory and his savings but his body may live to 100. He's quite angry about it all. I can sympathize as looking ahead to being older isn't nearly as much fun as it was when we were 20. The future doesn't look so wide open and exciting. Accepting such negative changes in your life can be quite difficult if not nearly impossible. We are seeing that here first hand with David's illness. I hope I'll do better but if the greatest generation can't do it, I'm not sure I'll be any better when the time comes. I really hope the options in Oregon will ultimately be available to anyone who needs them.

  6. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade! See you in a few weeks! I have a few trails picked out for us to hike!

  7. Thankfully my Mom is doing well getting used to her independent living facility. She is still driving fine, but she does need to learn to use their transportation system, she pays for it! We both feel more comfortable that she is watched out for by the staff and friends if we're not in California. Not easy!