elderly · family

At the Corner

At the corner of Grove and Spring Streets, I paused. Maggie dropped her fish and panted while I stepped back to survey the building from a different angle.

It’s a lovely setting surrounded by trees. Porches and patios invite the residents to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. Quiet and serene, the building stands removed just far enough from the hubbub of busy our tourist town. Expanses of lawn buffer it even more.

When I’m inside, I’m all yes.

When I leave, I wonder.

Maggie picked up her fish and we continued walking past the building.

I looked at the porch with its flower box. To the left was the dining room. I had eaten there a couple of weeks ago with my father.  We were just visiting, but I was impressed. Tables for six or eight, set with white linen table cloths and real china. Real food, not institutional. Servers who were both pleasant and competent. A little jazz played in the background.

“They take turns choosing what kind of music to play,” the administrator told me. “Also, people sit at the same table for about two months, but then we rearrange the seating plan so cliques don’t form and they all get to know each other.”

Every resident’s room is unique in configuration. Some have window seats. All have walk-in closets, high ceilings, and private bathrooms that include showers with seats and grab-bars. The rooms are spacious and cheerful.

I just never wanted to see my father leave his home.

But this isn’t an institution. It’s almost more like a sanctuary.

“We have lots of activities for the residents,” the administrator said. “We get tickets to the Hall of Fame Classic baseball game and sit in the grandstand so they are shaded from the sun.”

Dad would really enjoy that.

“Next week we’re going on a boat ride on the lake and maybe having a picnic on one of the beaches.”

I would like that.

I reached the end of the block with Maggie and looked back at the building.

From this corner, it still looked lovely.

I guess it’s time to finish the application for him.

14 thoughts on “At the Corner

  1. Sally, I know that this is a difficult decision for you. I pray that the Lord give you the peace that passes understanding as you navigate these waters.

  2. Peace to you, my friend. I believe AP’s lyric says this life is not long but it’s hard. Holding you in prayer.

  3. It’s a difficult decision to make. My parents are still able to care for themselves but I’m seeing signs that they need more attention than they did in the past. I know I’m nearing a transition.

  4. I was talking to my mother yesterday (she is 85 and I am fortunate that so far she is still sound enough in mind and body to live independently). She was talking about a conversation she recently had with my Sister-in-Law who is not so fortunate. Her mother is quite clearly suffering with dementia. My sister-in-law is Thai and it is hard to grasp the differing attitude but I won’t share that here. My mother had said to her ‘the hardest thing is when a child has to face that the moment has come to make decisions for the parent when the child inside just wants mummy or daddy to take care of them’. I thought of you. I send you love.

Comments are closed.