Here we go again!!

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I spent 2 long days with Mother this week-taking her to visit her newest Great grandchild and then today, cleaning and doing some long needed purging of TONS of paperwork. One of the things I found was the intake papers for HIP SURGERY! I said "Oh this is old, you weren't approved for this, so we can toss it". She said, "Oh, no, I am having my other hip replacement soon". My jaw hit the floor. THIS just went down in May and she was NOT approved for it, to my best knowledge. Her overall health is very poor. I asked her, as kindly as I could, "Mom, we went through this a few months ago, I was told your primary doc would not approve it. I KNOW I was told this". She said, "No, I decided on my own not to have it, but I am in such unbearable pain, I am going ahead". So I filed the papers and finished working--came home and called brother with whom she lives. (HE was the one who told me she wasn't approved) He said "She didn't do it b/c "S" (the youngest daughter) went behind her back and talked to the drs and made such a stink she decided to put it off and not tell her she was still going to do it later". This is the sister who wanted to have her declared incompetent. I told my brother that I did NOT appreciate being kept in the dark and looking a fool when she told me she wasn't going to have surgery. He didn't reply. I said "IF she is in such incredible pain, why is she taking one Tylenol every 8 hrs? Why is she going out 3-4 times a week? Why didn't she say anything to me?" I did tell her that the first hip surgery took her from using a cane to being totally dependent on a walker. I asked if she knew that a 2nd surgery may very well wind up with her wheelchair bound for life? She's fine with that, and she said her place was wheelchair friendly. (It's not). She's a grown woman, she can have the surgery if it means that much to her. Brother said he hasn't got the energy to fight her on it. I did promised not to say anything to other sibs--as they have proven over and over they really do not care.
I'm mad at my brother for his dishonesty and kind of mad at the dr who will actually do this surgery, but my mom isn't incompetent and she can have surgeries all she wants (I'm sure I mentioned she hasn't gone a year of her adult life without some kind of major surgery) and she will, too. She is super weak--to get her up and standing at the walker is a right tough job. I'm just going to be supportive of her choice and start looking for nice NH's in the area, as much as my brother thinks that he and I can care for her in her teeny apartment in a wheelchair--that's just not possible. I cannot get my sibs to meet to talk about mom's financials, I can't even get them to return phone calls. Guess I am not asking for any advice, really, just so frustrated by siblings who lie and withhold and a mother who lets me know that I am not the one she wished had visited her. (She said today "Oh, I saw that look in your eye. You want to throw out all my things, I've never met anyone who likes to throw away things more than you do) Yep, she caught me. But honestly, what 85 yo woman needs 123 notepads? Or well over a thousand return address labels? I totally respected her desires and only one small bag went into the trash. But now her kitchen table is clean and organized. And now I know she's gonna sneaky pete her way into surgery. (Sigh)


Vent away! Sounds like a tough situation to be in.
From the sounds of this I would make sure mom knew that you would not be caring for her at home.Don't be bullied into a caregiving situation with the kind of family "support " you have.
Just make sure mom goes to a great rehab place that has a long term care facility on its campus. When rehab is done, make sure the OT comes out to look at her apartment so it can be evaluated for safety and that you tell them that you do not live there with her. The LTCF will help get the ball rolling on Medicaid application. Do your homework beforehand.
Just so you know, when we cleaned out my parents'housr, we could have stocked a stationary store with the pens, pencils and notepads. Recently , my mom, now in a wheelchair in a NH asked if I had safety pins. I gave her the two I had in my purse. "I NEED MORE" she told me. She now own 100 safety pins. I don't ask, I assume when I'm 92, I'll find out what they're for.
Babalou--she already has her rehab place chosen, it is one she's used before and she likes it. They do have good rehab facilities and more activities than the posh one she was in last year. As far as her place being deemed "wheelchair accessible" I just know it's not. Dad was in a wheelchair for a month or so, but he could get himself in and out and all he did was roll down the short hall to the kitchen. He was bedbound the last year of his life. Mother is not thinking clearly, but as I said, I am not going to say a word to her about the surgery. If she wants it, she can have it. Her dream is to die under anesthesia...and she hopes this time she does. After thinking last night--she has gotten so much more frail, I wonder if she would re-qualify?
As far as all the junk she keeps....Mother has about that many safety pins, probably 200 paperclips, ALL her checks from 65 years of banking....when she goes it is going to be awful cleaning everything out. I was successful in tossing about 4 month's worth of newspapers. She said she was saving them for someone (she didn't remember who) but they took up one entire chair and were ready to topple. Oh well--when she does go to rehab post surgery I am really going to tear that place apart. She has 3 birds and those horrible animals alone require a scraper and a mask and disinfectant to clean up after. She complains that no one ever visits her, but I said "Many of the kids and grand kid are allergic to the birds". (My hubby being one). She cannot see well enough to keep their cage even remotely clean. Brother swears he takes it apart and cleans it weekly, but there is no way that's true. I'm not going to call him on it, he's overwhelmed with his own life and mother kind of just sucks the life out of all of us, really. It bothers me that he won't be truthful with me, and it really bothers me that the other sibs (who pay zero attention to her) suddenly go crazy when she wants to have another surgery. THEY don't take care of her! She just really, really loves attention. Always has, always will. I think if the sibs knew that, planned a weekly 1/2 hr visit with her, she wouldn't go to such extremes for the attention she craves, Sadly, she ignored us all when we were kids and also ignored our kids, so the g kids have little to no sense of connection with her. You reap what you sow.
"You reap what you sow." I wonder why so many of us go to such extremes to try to prevent that from happening?
Well, if she gets the surgery, it will either go well or go badly!

My mom had a knee replaced, and overall it went badly. She never walked much better than she did before, and that was the fond hope, that she'd be walking well enough to go home if the knee did not hurt so much.

In retrospect - it was worth the try, but we should have done things differently. She should have gone through the pre-rehab, and she should have done an epidural instead of the general but they gave her the choice and she took it. I was still not real clued in to the degree of her cognitive problems. She got back to doing a little walking in therapy, and at least the knee did not hurt anymore after the neuropathic pain was properly treated. (That's another story - trying to get her on a little gabapentin once they ruled out DVT - we had to have a run of Cymbalta first that did not agree with her as well.)

Wishing you the best. If nothing else, it's a chance to clean house a little while the other sibs enjoy their visits at the rehab.

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