Kristin: I just got off the phone with my mom.
Joe: Oh, how’s she doin’?
Kristin: Oh, she’s a little bit stressed out. We, um, we just had a long conversation about my grandmother.
Joe: Oh, how’s your grandmother doin’?
Kristin: Eh, so-so. My…
Kristin: …mom and my uncle have their hands, really have their hands full right now.
Kristin: Yeah, y’know, they s-, a while back they started to notice things every once in a while with my grandmother. For example her starting to drive more erratically. And they got concerned about that. And went to her doctor and explained everything to her doctor. And the doctor agreed, “Yeah, she shouldn’t be driving.” So the next
time my grandmother went in my uncle and mom both went and her d-, my grandmother’s doctor confronted her and said, “Y’know, I just think it’s time to give up the keys and not drive anymore.”
Joe: Wow, I guess that was…
Kristin: And understand-, understandably my grandmother was not happy but she did it.
Joe: Yeah, I mean, y’know, when you get to that age I guess that’s bound to happen sooner or later.
Kristin: Yeah, but now, um, here lately there have been quite a few more things concerning my mom and uncle. So, y’know, ever since my grandfather passed away a few years ago, uh, my grandmother’s just kind of gone downhill since. They’d been living in Florida and my mom and uncle decided to move my grandmother up just to be closer to them. There’s no other family in Florida. She had friends there but no family. And I think it helped her a bit but, um… she’s just, in general… I think, since he passed away, she’s just been going downhill. For example, she has emphysema…
Kristin: …but, um, just I’d say in the past year she’s been on her oxygen tank a good bit, a lot, and, and was even hospitalized. So it’s a… it’s been a problem in the past several years. But it’s got… definitely gotten worse over the past year. Uh, something else is… she’s on a bunch of different medications, unfortunately. And she’s just been mixing them up lately, which is not good. I think it just makes her cloudy and confused then, in general.
Joe: Yeah, I mean that can be really dangerous. I mean she could take a, uh, the wrong dosage of a medication. And it… it could be lethal.
Kristin: Yeah. Yeah, exactly. So…yeah, they’re just… they’re thinking more and more like I said, assisted living. Y’know, I’d say about a month or so ago they had, uh, sat my grandmother down and given her an ultimatum. Y’know, when… when they were noticing a few things here and there, like with her driving, they decided, “Okay it’s time to do something.” So they sat her down and, and said, “We’re givin’ you three choices. You can go into assisted living. Or you can have someone start coming in regularly to sit with you, make sure you’re taking your medications, the correct ones at the correct times. Or you can go and live with, um, Susan”… my mom. And…my grandmother decided she didn’t want to live with my parents. She didn’t want to put them out. And she definitely didn’t want to go to assisted living.
So she chose to have a sitter. She didn’t like that either, but she realized she had no choice. Well, she had to choose one of the three choices. So she’s been having a woman coming in like three days a week. And since that – this woman has been coming in then – my mom and uncle have realized, “Oh, she needs someone actually, kinda seven days a week, not just three.” And they talked to the agency. Uh, this particular woman couldn’t come in seven days a week. So the agency actually found someone else. I think… I think she’s only… this new person’s only coming in two days. So that leaves still two days out of the week that my grandmother doesn’t have anyone coming in. But my mom and uncle are even thinking it’s to the point that she kinda needs someone twenty-four seven. Well, not when she’s sleeping, I shouldn’t say, but, when… definitely when she’s awake.
Joe: Yeah, I mean that… this sounds like a really difficult situation. I really feel for your mom.
- stressed out: very worried
- so-so: not good and not bad
- have their hands full: very busy
- every once in a while: sometimes
- erratically: unpredictably
- bound to happen: very likely to happen
- sooner or later: at some time in the future
- quite a few: many
- passed away: died
- kind of: sort of
- gone downhill: to have become much worse
- in general: overall
- a good bit: a lot
- a bunch: a lot
- mixing them up: confusing them
- cloudy: not clear
- dosage: amount
- lethal: deadly
- assisted living: a place for older people to live when they need extra help
- ultimatum: a last request to do something before action is taken
- regularly: usually or often
- put them out: to inconvenience
- twenty-four seven: 24 hours a day seven days a week
- feel for: feel sorry for