Mom and Dad are late in their years. Mom is 89 and has moderate dementia. Dad just turned 91 and was in excellent physical health despite a history of heart disease and bypass surgeries.
"Was" is the critical verb in the prior sentence.
Dad is the decision maker, always has been. A retired dentist who had a successful practice, he is a leader and is used to being in charge.
Also a faithful husband and family man, Dad made a personal commitment to himself years ago to take care of his wife to the end.
He will also admit that he is the world's worst planner ... except for when it came to vacations.
He didn't count on disability.
Having elderly parents, seeing their travails on a weekly basis (my commitment to them was to visit at least once a week), and watching them sunset physically and mentally, provides some awareness of the disabled state.
Dementia is a terrible disease. It progresses gradually, taking elements of memory away from daily functioning in a cruel manner. At Mom's stage, she forgets sometimes just how to walk, so she falls and then can't get back up.
Dad thought he could deal with this. He thought wrong.
Dad has sciatica and pain radiates down his leg. This started a few months ago.
A shot of cortisone every once in a while alleviates the symptoms and he goes about his days with good energy and strength. But when he has to wait because of dosing issues, or just access issues, he can't move much without a walker.
This past week was a seminal week in my father's...