Moved Grandma to Independent retirement near me and I'm exhausted already! Just need to vent and ask advice.
I am glad to have found these forums!
Sandwich generation. Some backgound. I am 42, DH 48 and we have 16 month old twins and my 85 year old father-in-law with us. My FIL was always in excellent health until the kids were born and then multiple surgeries have affected him. He is very mobile but has early dementa. He has lived with my husband and I for years now and has been very easy to live with so far.
The issue is my very needy and lazy grandma is 73. (I love her very much BTW, just stating facts!) She realized she was spending her money to fast and looked to my brother and I to find a new living situation for her. She once had a lot of money, but paying for help when she didn't need it took its toll. I found an awesome independent retirement home 10 minutes from me and she moved in. The month of July felt like it would never end between getting her moved, having a yeard sale at her place and getting her situated with doctors.
Mentally, my grandmotehr is great, physically, not so much. She has osteoarthritis and a bad back with failed back surgery and is totally reliant upon her scooter, which I hate. Once, after a hospital stay, she was so weak that she went to rehab and could actually walk again with a walker, but as soon as she went home, she got right back on her scooter and now can only transfer again. She also has incontinece issues and takes 27 pills a day!
I already know, as her previous neighbor has warned me, that grandma is thinking that she is going to move in with us one day! She is always inquiring about the health of my FIL, and I know her ulterior motive. I have gleened from reading this forums that this is a terrible idea. She has enough funds to live about 4 years there if she stops her ridiculous catelog shopping habit.
She is running me ragged already. She doesn't like to lift a finger for herslef and will manipulae people into doing things for her. This neighbor that she used to have would walk my grandmother's dogs every day for her. My grandmother could take them on her scooter, but she won't.
She needs her pacemaker replaced now and we had 3 medical appointments last week and another 3 lined up this week already. This places huge stress on my DH, who is taking care of our twins and FIL whle I am gone.
Still yet, there will be the actual procedure and hospital stay. Then I still have to take care of getting her set up with a urologist and opthamologist and vet.
Then there are the phone calls daily, letting me know the moment she runs out of something. And taking care of her finaces, changing addresses, consolidating bank accounts, the list goes on and on.
My mother lives 10 minutes away too, but this is her step-mother and their relationship is not great. My grandmotehr has done some very greedy and selfish things and I don't blame my mother and am not going to ask for her help. My mother has her own health issues and loading and loading my grandmothers scooter would be a challenge for her. She has always been the grandma I have known in my life even though we are not blood. She has never had any children and does not understand their constant needs.
I was feeling pretty stressed before reading these boards about my grandmother's eventual request to move in. But I know now that I need to put the needs of my family first and that I cannot do that and be the caregiver she needs. This will mean a NH down the road, so I will have to be strong.
The retirement home provides all meals, has on site caregivers that charge $10/day. This is a huge savings for her right there! They also provide housekeeping. The transportaion my grandmother cannot use because they are not able to take her scooter. I am trying to get her set up for our county para-transit service and I know she will act like she can't go anywhere by helself, but I am not taking her to get her nails done, dang it! I also have her set up with a pharmacy that delivers.
I do not mind taking her to an appointment or two a month and going over a night weekly after my kids are in bed to take care of her bills and bring her things she needs. I know that she is looking to me for companionship as well and I hope that as she makes friends, that need diminishes a little.
Any other advice or words of wisdom for me to balance things and set boundaries? Anyone have experience with para-transit? Is it un-realistic to expect her to use it in a town new to her, and by herslef, even though all she needs is the address of her destination?