Tuesday, September 20, 2011


I made the thirty minute drive the other day to pay a visit to Dad. It was a hot and beautiful day, one of the few we've gotten here, and I figured I'd probably find him outside on the patio of his house. I parked my car, seeing only another resident in his wheelchair, reading in the shade of a tree. When I walked into the house, I saw my Dad, reclining on the couch with his eyes closed. A young man who introduced himself as the son of the owner introduced himself.

I sat next to Dad, who opened his eyes and looked at me sideways, wary and curious as to what I wanted. Looking into his blue eyes, curious as always as to what sort of recognition, if any, I would see there, I started talking to him, mentioning the heat and the lovely sun. The young man leaned over and said that until a few minutes ago, Dad had been outside walking around and enjoying the sun and that they had just come in for a little rest. This sounded perfectly reasonable, but my constant doubts raised their heads.

The last time I visited, Dad had been snoozing in his room in his recliner. I had seen him at other times, drowsing on the couch or in his chair. Could I really trust them to be doing what was best for Dad and making him walk and exercise? When you finally decide you need to give over care of your loved one to someone else, even if you find a caregiver you think is the most capable and trustworthy, I've found you never really stop being suspicious. You never completely trust that they will treat your loved one well, and not leave them stranded like so many horror stories that make the rounds.

I'm pretty sure I've found the absolute best place possible for Dad. I believe that they care for my Father. The home has great state reviews and inspections, and I stop in unannounced as often as I can. The worst thing I've ever seen is Dad snoozing inside on a sunny day. But I am never, ever free of these quiet doubt whispers, and I figure I never will be. It is the price I pay for not taking care of Dad personally.

1 comment:

  1. I know how you feel. Now matter how nice a place is, you still wonder if they are treating them well. I think my best day was when I said how pretty the room was and my mom said thank you, I am so glad you like my house.