There is a fine line when assisting the aged. Their dignity must be retained, their independence supported and encouraged, but their frailties thoughtfully considered.
As the "Responsible Person" assisting in securing help for the Grands beyond what we can offer, many awkward (and unbelievably frustrating) situations arise, as I am also their cherished daughter. If ever there was a period of time in life for humility towards parents, this is it. Not quite as the humbling situation happens, but very shortly after and it is a persistent haunting. It preoccupies.
Heart: You should do more for them! You should see them more frequently!
Head: You have done all you can! You have assisted in making their lives as safe, secure and as peaceful as can be!
Some of the services in place for the Grands include:
Additional weekly transport to various venues
Hearing Impaired phone
Medical Alarm pendants
I am extremely grateful for the last item on the list. It was Grandpa who pressed the red button when Granny was coughing and choking, battling to get air and still stubbornly refusing to let him call us. We were notified within five minutes by the Medical Alarm service. We would have taken forty minutes to reach them. Paramedics were there within fifteen minutes.
Two days after her 87th birthday, Granny spent an eventful afternoon / evening tended to by Ambulance and ER staff. After he was told that his wife would not be admitted to the hospital that evening, Grandpa assured us that he would let us know when she was home safe and sound.
When we called him, he sounded somewhat irritated.
"Yes, she is home, and is still full of nonsense"
"She's grumbling about the fact that I put her evening meal vegetables back in the fridge just after the Paramedics took her away. How was I to know she would be back so soon...."