Approaching the Care for Mom and Elder Care Options

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So I began the search yesterday (on line) for options for Mom in our area. Just a preliminary glance at what getting her to Mount Juliet near us might look like. I looked at our options, the cost of real estate, and the various forms of real estate. I checked out the senior living communities, the levels of care, and glanced at the wide range of costs accordingly. I also talked with George and considered options if Mom were to stay with us.

So it’s just the beginning. We’ve much to discuss and to discover. But it is time to decide upon our approach. I think that is probably the biggest decision yet. How will we approach this. Having everyone on the same page, looking in the same direction, and having open minds at what possibilities lay ahead. If we don’t decide our approach and plans on “how to approach this”, nothing will happen until it’s too late and decisions will be made on a whim and will be narrowed at that point.

Deciding the Approach of Senior Living

When I say “How will we approach this?” I mean how will we in the family (Mom, me, and George) tackle the 1) Looking 2) Decisions 3) Timing 4) Moving —-and so forth. I mean things like – getting Mom here to look at property or communities, will we drive around and look at communities and get a feel for neighborhoods first, or do we just get a realtor. And narrowing our focus on what we are focusing on. We need to funnel down and figure out what we are doing and know what we need to do and go from there. Otherwise we will stay in the speculating mode until it’s too late.

Options for Senior Living

In my quick glances and it was very quick I might add, I’ve seen the following:

  • Senior Living Communities – With varying levels of care. Some have their own properties and some do not. Some have Independent living but include *some* level of care and then it goes to assisted living and more nursing home type care from there. I checked out several of these places. With some care $12,000 annually – on up according to level of care. These included housework, some meals, having staff on hand, use of facilities to gather, social aspects for the minimum of care and as the level of care increased so does the cost.
  • Condos. Preferably condos with one floor. Well that is hard to find. Most are townhomes. Some are affordable, most are not and are as pricy as most homes. However, I have made a mental note that as long as a bedroom is on the main floor it might be doable. One has to keep an open mind. Family could visit and use the upstairs – family would have to keep up the upstairs as well. Not a bad option. Also one room could be a storage area for the family to access I guess as the senior does not need to be going up and down the stairs. If one had an open mind – there are beautiful condo units that would provide a first floor haven – IF.ONE.HAD.AN.OPEN.MIND!
  • Smaller Home communities. This is a good option. But wow, hardly any of them for sale. Matter of fact much of what was for sale in any range was already pending. This will be a hard find but doable if we snag it at the right time. We have to be “Johnny on the Spot” when these go on the market. This is what I mean about knowing our approach. We have to be like birds on prey for the swooping!
  • There are NEW homes being built at lower pricing but most are just outside our reach on what we think Mom can afford when selling her house. Yes, we’ll have to help her sell her house. Again, what is our approach? What is our plan? Buy pending the sale? Go ahead and sell? What? We need a game plan.
  • Looking Further Out. We have to decide the radius from us. My view is that we can do Mount Juliet, Hermitage, and Lebanon. All 20 -30 minutes – like a drive across town. Anywhere where it’s feasible we can “come right over” after work and on weekends, and such. Lebanon had better pricing as it’s further out from Nashville, but NOT BY MUCH, much to my dismay!
  • Living with us. I talked to George as to how we might handle this. He is on board with it if we decide to go this route until Mom is ready for Assisted Living care. We would likely turn my office into her bedroom or something to that effect. I’d move a china hutch downstairs and move my office desk into the living area – something like that. We’d figure it out. We have enough space.
  • Apartment living. I think this has been ruled out, but it is certainly an option.
  • In Home Care. Another option is someone to help Mom with In Home Care at her own home now. That gets a little riskier but you can’t rule it out if you have an open mind and an honest person giving care at whatever level is needed. So again – we need to decide or approach, or not. And then something happens and the options narrow.
  • Some other option not considered yet.

Anyway, it’s not feasible for us to get down to Columbia every weekend or on a whim, we can increase our time going down there but for a long term care solution for her. We can’t manage household emergencies, medical appointments, and such from up here. Sometimes care can’t be done just on the weekends. Mom needs help but we need to be near her. If she is here we can spend time together, help with emergencies, help with the dog, pick up meds, feed her good meals, and give her some rest and relief and some happiness. We are all game! I’d be so excited to have her near or even here. We will figure it out together! Stay tuned.

8 responses to “Approaching the Care for Mom and Elder Care Options”

  1. Yes, this is a LOT to consider.
    I’ve been thru this already.
    It will work out. At least you are aware
    of the options. I hope your mom can keep an open mind. This move will be life changing for her.

  2. Hi Sonya, quite a difficult position for you all to be in. I think when you see Mum next time you are ALL going to get down to think things through. Starting perhaps with those suggestions of yours written down and ALL looked at ….I agree though that something needs to be decided sooner rather than later. My niece looked for a house as her Dad my Brother in law had indicated he would rather stay with her that go into care he is 89 now. So they decided to both look for property and put his house up for sale. He got a miraculous sale as the estate agent ( realtor I think you call them) went back to the office to get the details in for the sale and a lady came in for the exact property in that street. She came viewed and bought it all within a week!! However it meant my BIL had to move in with Barbara till a house they had seen became vacant. The house has three bedrooms two up and one down.Sitting room and dining room and kitchen also downstairs my BIL has the downstairs bedroom and connecting dining room which is his sitting room. They wanted to put the laundry room into an on suite wet room for him but he wouldn’t have it so he uses the downstairs toilet etc when he goes upstairs Barbara is there to watch him safety wise. It has worked very well they all eat dinner together but Mitch has his lunch teas etc in ..his..sitting room where he also has his own TV
    So that might give you some idea love. I think Mum would have to have a bedroom with you plus a small sitting room…..take care. Don’t work to hard..

  3. It’s good you are thinking about it. My mom lives in a retirement home. It is part of a company called “Holiday Retirement.” There, we hire a company with additional services. Those services can be added as needed. We are happy with her care there. She is 98. She needs more care than we could provide. Good luck with your decisions!

  4. I just wondering as I thought you have a sister, is she on board? Will she be in on the collaboration? Sometimes there gets to be family discord with parental plans!

  5. I hope you find the right place for your Mom. I would pick someplace with no steps and close to you as you can get. My Mom had a home health care aid. It worked out well. So she was able to live in her home until she passed.
    It has crossed my mind what would I do if my husband passed and I was left with this big house and yard to keep up. How long would I be able to?
    Age creeps upon us. Several friends have lost husbands. It really makes one stop and think. Good luck to you.

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