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My mom is delightful when she is healthy. She is independent and thriving. When she falls ill, she calls me early in the morning and I'm off and running. Getting to her, getting in touch with the right doc for the ailment that is occurring. She is sometimes on top of her finances, mostly, and now there are some oops moments. Life has become chaotic and I find that it takes me much too much time to get back on a schedule. My work is deteriorating, my friends don't count on seeing me anymore, my fitness and eating are off track. Right now for example I am writing on this site, after reading some wonderful, reassuring posts, I'm afraid to pick up the phone and make appointments for myself, because lately I've cancelled so many. Mom's health has been up and down. We are interviewing help this afternoon, but I'm not even sure we know what is needed since the situation is such a roller coaster. I know it will be terminal... but for now, and for possibly years... her life and my life have fallen into utter chaos and I can say for sure, I've lost the discipline to keep moving forward. I'm indecisive and would appreciate any tips and tricks and suggestions from others who have found a way to keep order where there is none. Thank you for listening and for your anticipated good suggestions.

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The best example for this care giving including the responsibilities is our mothers. They care for the each member in the house, Keeping in mind about the responsibilities that they have.
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THE MOST IMPORTANT PART IS THAT YOU TAKE CARE OF YORSELF FIRSTL YOU CAN NOT TAKE CARE OF ANYONE WITHOUT TAKING CARE OF YOU. TRY AND PRIORITZE AND PUT SOME ME TIME IN THERE. YOU KNOW HOW WHEN YOU ARE ON AN AIRPLANE THEY TELL YOU TO PUT YOUR OXYGEN MASK ON FIRST BEFORE YOU ASSIST OTHERS. TRY TO USE THIS ANALOGYT O ENCOURAGE YOURSELF...
HUGS HUGS, AND MORE HUGS TO YOU....
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Great point, but what is an emergency with a 92 yr old? Mom fell last night. Called to say she was bleeding a lot, but stopped the bleeding. Fortunately it was the once a month that my sister was on her way there. Mom called, said she was in bed with her leg elevated and my sister would help, so no need to come over. However, the next morning I was stressed... believing that they may have experienced internal bleeding, hospitalization... my sister didn't call, mom was not answering the phone. I waited 4 hours that morning, calling once an hour, always on my mind, just to find they went for stitches and then shopping. Sometimes it's just me who shouldn't worry...

I'm so unfamiliar with what will be the final end of life, it's such a HUGE thing, that every little thing scares me, sets me on edge and I try to be there to help save my sweet mom's life. Yes, .... what is the definition of an emergency? We will keep talking and try to define that and hopefully things will settle down... Last week we got help for the dentist and blood test appointments. Those for sure where not emergencies. This is living. I am thankful that I still have my beautiful mom around and that she is our 'family' and that we can appreciate how lucky we are to have her still with us. Thank you for your ideas... they all help to make me think!
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You certainly have a full plate! More often than not, caregiving is chaotic and unpredictable for all of us at times. I totally understand your feeling of your life being a reaction to her unpredictable requests. Have you tried setting boyndariedwith het about when she can call you unless it's an emergency?
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Somewhere I just read that someone sits down on Sundays and puts together her whole calendar for the week ahead. She hates doing it. I thought that was an interesting emotion, and so I tried it. Found a good calendar. Sat down and wrote it all out... not sure how much it will help, but it let me see the places where there are pile-ups and where there are gaps (few). Also, I love that FlyLady is suggesting to clean out my garbage pails. I'm hesitant to do anything too big, like booking a meeting with a real work contact, but cleaning the old garbage pails... now that's an idea. I'm hoping all this will add up to something big. Thank you all for your suggestions!! I'm going to try playing "Beat the Clock" too!
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Just get as much done as you can, when you can. Some days I am pleased with what I get done, some not so much...

I play this little game with myself sometimes, like in the morning, I get up and get as much done prior to my parents getting up as I can... then while they eat breakfast or lunch, I do the same, I do laundry or dishes, running from task to task... I think of it like a game show! "Beat the Clock!" Type game! Make it fun, see how much you can get done in those few moments here and there! :)
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I can so relate to everything you are going through! The calls, the drs, the food, the chaos, the friendships withering, my Mom valued her independence a lot too, so much that I let things get to meltdown mode because I didn't want to "rob" her of living alone. My Mom went from independent living to memory care (locked down unit).I brought up assisted living and she would hang up on me or tell me to never speak of it again, What I have found out abt assisted living is that it would have been a Godsend and enabled her independence much longer. Assisted living is food service, med control, nurses available 12 hr/day, bingo, friends, shopping trips, activities. Def ask your mom to consider it, it would so give you a life!! Do you remember what life was like when your mom was your adult friend and not your child? It will give you some of that back as well. I wish all the best for you and your mom. Your road is tough.
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Thank you for the suggestions. I do have POA, just did some banking transitions. It breaks my heart, because except for the few oops, mom has been incredibly on top of things in the past and it demonstrates her capabilities... although they are slipping a bit, I hate to take those things from her. So, I'm taking small steps. Balanced her check book for the last 3 months, while things had been particularly chaotic, and now I'll do it for sure every month. Set up bill paying, interviewed new help, asked the person who comes once a week for 3 hours to increase the time to another day, so I can count on that at least. We take one step forward and one back... I hesitate to bring too much help in, because Mom's independence is her joy these days, but I have to be careful and after a few weeks of a long dip on the roller coaster, I realize I've become a puddle. Today is a much better day. I'm heading to the gym and to grab a coffee with a girlfriend who has similar responsibilities. Hopefully these good times will last for a while before the next slip. For now, today we are rolling up a bit. Thank you for your thoughtful ideas and for sharing your situations. It is VERY helpful to me and for my sanity. Very, very helpful. Thank you for sharing.
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I know what you mean about a roller coaster! It is hard to make decisions when there is great and frequent fluctuation in need!

Your mother is now in independent living, right? Is it time to consider a transition to assisted living? You would still be getting the calls about taking her to a doctor I'm afraid, so if that is the only cause of the chaos, I don't know how much that would help. You could relax about her between calls. Would that help?

It sounds like it is time to take over her finances if she is beginning to have oops episodes. It is easier to take control, set up automatic payments, and monitor everything online, that to try to straighten problems out after the fact.

Do you have POA?
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Wow you are expecting miracles from this group. I too was thrown into this, my mom was calling constantly 4am 5pm you name it. it's like your a fireman without a pole to slide down fast enough to get there. it finally got so bad i had to move in with her and i'm still here a year later. Life i don't have one anymore i get 4 hours off a day, and go like a bat out of hell to keep my house up and running even tho I dont live there, shop whatever needs to be done. If you are not able to make this big of commitment you need to find alternate care. Assisted living facility, home health but that will still be only so many hours a day.. i have learned you don't make any plans anymore, because you never know even with the 4 hour helper she can become overwhelming to them and they call me the whole time I'm gone. I apologize for not being this upbeat great help person but it's a horrible situation and somedays it takes everything just to survive it. You have a big decision to make Do or Don't. My heart goes out to you.
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