Today I am grateful for our ability to care for R’s Dad and have him live with us.
It sounds like a strange thing to be grateful for.. I mean to have an in law live with you?! Yes it can be frustrating at times, well exhausting really, but the truth is I am glad for the peace of mind it gives R knowing he is there for his Dad.
This morning as we were in the kitchen getting ready for work, R’s Dad came in to the kitchen complaining of a pain in his back. It had kept him up all night. R’s Dad does not complain unless it is really bad. We were able to have a quick discussion, run down our schedules for the day, and R was able to stay home to take him to the Dr. this morning. This could never have happened as quickly if he didn’t live with us.
After the loss of R’s Mom it was really important for him that we were there for his Dad. There was never any question on my part and said of course. Our little house at the time would never accommodate all of us, plus our future children. So we decided at that time to build a new house, with space and such so R’s Dad could be comfortable. We opted to actually buy R’s childhood home and build new on the lot, which allowed his Dad to remain in his neighborhood he has always known.
Cohabitation isn’t without its challenges, disagreements and frustrations. What we do know is that it is the right thing for all of us, so we make it work. I also like the idea that our future child will get to have such a close relationship with their Opa.
One article that was helpful was an article in the Huntington Post. called 15 Ways to Stay Sane While Caring For an Elderly Parent.
- Accept that things have changed.
- Take it slowly
- Expect nothing emotionally
- Expect their anger
- Give them their autonomy
- Ask their advice
- Separate their emotional dysfunction from their cognitive dysfunction
- Love your health care providers
- Depend upon your spouse
- Protect your buttons.
- Prepare for sibling insanity
- Take care of yourself
- Talk to a friend
- Have fun
- Pray or meditate
I highly recommend reading the article, even if your parents don’t live with you.