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Old 11-21-2011, 10:26 AM   #21
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Now you know why I purchased LTC insurance with a home care rider.
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Old 11-21-2011, 10:32 AM   #22
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Just have to remember which pill bottle on the bedside table is nembutol and which is arthritis med.
The difficult part of that requirement is, "just have to remember".
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Old 11-21-2011, 10:34 AM   #23
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Just have to remember which pill bottle on the bedside table is nembutol and which is arthritis med.
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The difficult part of that requirement is, "just have to remember".
And then there's the child-proof caps....
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Old 11-21-2011, 11:39 AM   #24
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I was just re-reading my Dad's Living Will and Durable POA for Health Care. It's from 1999 when he was 73. It's very clear what his wishes are.

In the last few weeks he's said that this would all be easier for all concerned if he could just move on and be with Mom again, she died Oct. 24th. He's in rehab at a nursing home recovering from surgery for a broken hip. Outside of the recent events he's in decent health so we are nowhere near anything described in the Living Will. He's just wants his old life back and realizes he may need help if he ever gets to go home again.

He's a very practical guy and I think if he could just say his goodbyes and go to sleep he'd be fine with not waking up. But you don't get a choice in how it all happens.

Luckily a couple of his nurses are cute so waking up works for now.
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Old 11-21-2011, 12:29 PM   #25
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If I were in your shoes I would look at assisted living facilities in your area. Don't tell him you are looking but you can determine if anything near you would be suitable. There won't be many male residents and I can tell you that he will get a lot of attention from the ladies (saw that at my Mother's place). There are a few continuning care communities that are month to month, there may be one in your area. The goal would be to provide him living options where he won't be lonely and will have the help he may need.
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Old 11-21-2011, 12:40 PM   #26
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If I were in your shoes I would look at assisted living facilities in your area. Don't tell him you are looking but you can determine if anything near you would be suitable. There won't be many male residents and I can tell you that he will get a lot of attention from the ladies (saw that at my Mother's place). There are a few continuning care communities that are month to month, there may be one in your area. The goal would be to provide him living options where he won't be lonely.
Yes, we're already doing that. My sister lives in his area and has a few places in mind. He's open to the idea as he's had many friends and relatives go through these stages. My aunt lived in a nice assisted living (across the street from Dad's condo apartment building) that was a small 1 BR apartment with a full kitchen and a bathroom built with elderly needs in mind. She could cook her own meals or have 2 meals a day in the central dining room. Lots of outings and activities. She was very content there. My sister says there is a waiting list and depending on my Dad's ultimate outcome she may apply. Lots of other assisted living options near him. The nursing home where he is right now is on a large "campus" for elderly of all different levels of need.
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Old 11-21-2011, 01:12 PM   #27
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In the past year, I have watched 3 family members go through the death process:

My mom had end-stage COPD and was put on a ventilator. She had always said she did not want to live tied to a machine and she made the decision to pull the plug. She called all of us in to say a final goodbye. But, she just couldn't do it. It was always "just one more day". However, the constant tension of trying to decide when to do it was tearing her (and us) apart. We finally persuaded her to just postpone it and let nature take its course. Which it did, after a few more days. She died peacefully - and we are the ones who requested that the ventilator be turned off.

My BIL has pancreatic and liver cancer. He is a former cop and I know he has been tempted on several occasions to eat his gun. However, even though the chemo has been stopped and he's in terrible pain, he is still fighting. He saw a TV show where a doctor was talking about nanomolecules to treat advanced liver cancer and he was enraged that no one had given him that option. He plans to go see another specialist. Although he's dying, he is still fighting.

My brother has a fatal lung disease and is living on borrowed time. He also talked to me about pulling the plug when the time comes and I said I would help in any way. However, he is fighting hard every day for just a bit of normality. That's one of the reasons I bought the RV - he wants to see Mt. Rushmore before he dies and I'm going to get him there.

The conclusion I reached from all this is that we can all theorize about pulling the plug when quality of life diminishes, but in reality, life wants to continue and your body/mind will fight for it.

I have no worries about my own death, since I suspect I'm going to drive the RV off a cliff. Man that thing is hard to handle!
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Old 11-21-2011, 01:27 PM   #28
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The conclusion I reached from all this is that we can all theorize about pulling the plug when quality of life diminishes, but in reality, life wants to continue and your body/mind will fight for it.
+1

The thought of controlling our own destiny is very appealing but the final chapter almost always has a surprise ending.
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Old 11-21-2011, 02:03 PM   #29
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He's just wants his old life back and realizes he may need help if he ever gets to go home again.
He's a very practical guy and I think if he could just say his goodbyes and go to sleep he'd be fine with not waking up. But you don't get a choice in how it all happens.
Luckily a couple of his nurses are cute so waking up works for now.
What they say and what they really want (or at least realize after the fact) seem to be two different things.

My Dad's a loner (OK, "hermit" works too) and he claims he doesn't care to socialize.

When he and I had the conversation about "old life back living in his old apartment" a few months ago, I suggested that a care facility would give him all the privacy and independence he wanted in his room, with all the help (and safety) he needed just outside that door. Since he doesn't have much of a short-term memory, we had that conversation every few hours every day for the first time.

The only way we got him to go to the care facility was when the doctor "ordered" him to go to the skilled nursing facility (also the care facility) for rehab from his surgery. I don't know if Dad automatically respected the authority figure who'd literally saved his life, or if he just figured that this was the most expeditious way out of the hospital. The compromise made everybody feel that they'd preserved their honor.

What totally sold him on the care facility is that he no longer has to do chores. Apparently when he was living independently he'd do his chores in the morning and go hiking for the rest of the day. He said that before he ended up in the hospital, however, the chores were starting to take him all the way past dinnertime. He was frustrated and unhappy. But he wanted to be independent, too.

He also loves socializing at the care facility, and the attractive women are just a bonus.
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Old 11-21-2011, 02:05 PM   #30
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I've always had a problem dealing with death and dying, including my own. Dad had hospice come into their home when mom was dying, and that seemed like a good option at the time. But then my dad died instantly six months later from either a stroke or a massive heart attack. ( Which, by the way, is how he said he wanted to die.) I've always wondered if the months of care he provided to my mom might have contributed to his death. In-home care was what my mom wanted though.

I've got LTC insurance with an in-home option for DW and me. But that's just the financial piece. I'm sure dad wanted to die quickly, but not so soon. He was planning a cross-country trip to visit old friends. I would have to be in an awful lot of pain to want someone to pull the plug on me. But then the morphine used for the pain would probably take care of that anyway. This is a tough subject.
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