take care cher

A single woman's journey as a caregiver to an elderly parent, 5 dogs, a house….and most importantly myself

To Pee Or Not To Pee……WHO Is The Question!

Good Day To You!

Having to take care of an entire home and yard by myself (with a little help from the guy I pay to mow), is daunting at best. In the past year I’ve had to put a new roof on the house…can you say $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$?  And just a week ago, my A/C company told me the day was coming when I would have to replace my entire A/C system to the tune of $5,000.00!!!!  Let’s take a moment of silence to pray for me…….amen!!  So obviously, I have enough stress keeping up my house, without other fun things happening that make keeping the house clean difficult at best.  After using voluminous amounts of paper towels, and mopping constantly, it’s time to take a stand and deduce WHO IS PEEING ANOTHER LAKE MICHIGAN (or here in Florida, that would be Lake Okeechobee) ON MY FLOOR WHEN I’M NOT LOOKING??? The other day, no sooner had I cleaned up one deluge, then someone else came along and did it again….IN THE SAME SPOT!!!!  Did I mention I was trying to get ready for work???  Aaarrrggghhh!!

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Star, modeling the newest fashion for male doggies, the Dingleydang Prison, or more precisely, the male diaper!

I have five dogs and I have whittled it down to two suspects.  Even though my Min Pin Bruiser likes to mark, he has a bladder the size of a grape, so him being responsible is physically impossible and my blind Cocker has never had an accident in the house.  So, I went to Petsmart yesterday, and yes I did!!!  I bought a DOGGIE DIAPER!!  It’s a drastic step, but I just cannot take it anymore and I’ve got to do something before my insurance company demands I purchase flood insurance!!!!!  I have started the wearing of the diaper with the first suspect, and I am thinking that if we can all go a week without a major deluge, my beautiful black Cocker Star is the culprit.  Star is the one that is always fighting with Bruiser, who has little man syndrome and thinks HE rules the roost…all 10 lbs. of him, and Star is also always trying to hump his brother Angel…both of which are signs of trying to establish dominance.

When I moved into my childhood home to be with my Mom, me and my Xacto knife tore up all the nasty carpet that my Dad never vacuumed, shampooed….nothing, which revealed hardwood underneath.  If you’re a caregiver to an elderly person, trust me, this is a wise move because my Mom’s hands shake and she spills everything; that’s why I serve all of her drinks in sippy cups. There have been “other” accident types by Mom that I won’t explain in detail, but suffice it to say, carpet would have made it a bigger disaster.  Also, I had ceramic tile installed in the kitchen and dining room.  If I didn’t have this type of flooring with an unstable adult and five dogs, I think I’d have to go work for Stanley Steemer!   More fun and games to come.  Until next time!

-Cher

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Resentment Is A Waste Of Time

Mom & Me in Happier and Healthier Times

Mom & Me in Happier and Healthier Times

After over seven years with my Mom, who is a stroke and dementia victim, and also is losing her hearing and going blind from Macular Degeneration, I find myself feeling resentful sometimes that I took on the role of her caregiver.  I lose my temper over dumb things, like the 5th time she asks me the same question over dinner, or when she wants to know what I’m saying when I’m just talking to the dogs…or worse yet, myself, which I do A LOT thank you very much!!  🙂   I get testy because she likes to ask me a question right after I leave the room and I’m on the other side of the house.   I get my panties in a twist because she wants to go to the grocery with me and sit in the car….meanwhile my $3.50/gallon gas is going bye bye because obviously I leave the car and the air running!  I get irritated when she blows her nose on my napkins at the dinner table and hoards toilet paper, napkins, kleenex, paper towels….you name it, and stuffs it in her walker!!  And ALL of this resentment about silly, petty things, makes me feel like a total BEYOTCH!!!

For all the caregivers of an elderly parent out there, you are NOT alone!  And the bottom line is, if you are with them of your own free will, and stuff starts to get to you, either re-examine your situation, or get over it and remind yourself WHY you’re there.  I have to do this daily, but in a nutshell, I’m there for a variety of reasons as follows:  I promised my Dad I would take care of her….I promised her I would never take her away from her home of 55 years….and the major reason I’m with her, is because I was fortunate enough to have exceptional parents that wiped my nose, mouth, & butt and put up with me charging clothes, make-up, you name it on their charge account without complaint, bought me a car when I probably didn’t deserve it, and paid for me to go to a school away from home and actually trusted me not to get seriously killed….or arrested!

But the most important reasons I’m with my Mom is, my parents were funny, kind, generous, big-hearted people that would give a stranger the shirt off their backs, and just about the finest people I’ve ever known.  But most importantly….a day has never gone by in my life that I doubted their love for me and that they would be there for me through thick and thin.  That being said, my living situation is the only one that allows me to look in the mirror and be able to live with myself.  Frankly, I don’t know how she puts up with my cranky self sometimes.  She can’t hear, see, or walk very well, so the days of piano playing, singing, crocheting, doing crossword puzzles, playing scrabble and gin rummy, sewing for me, and even being able to attend church and take away anything positive…those days are over.   Whoever thought of the term “Golden Years” was a delusional meth addict because that is a total crock!!!

All my Mom has is cranky old me and five dogs!!  So even if I go home tonight and am feeling less than social, I always, always, ALWAYS make a point to hug and kiss her when I walk in the door, because how can you not when she tells me she loves me the minute I walk in…she’s an angel.  I know everyone out there doesn’t have the same situation or the same wonderful memories, so analyze your feelings and situation, and do what’s best for both of you.  And if you’re anything like me, a HUMONGOUS glass of vino helps too!!   Enough for now, but next post I’m going to share some of the things I use that make her quality of life a little bit better.  It should be good for a few laughs!!!  I’d love to hear from y’all….till then.

Cher

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