Tuesday, February 17, 2009

"Single Parent"

While visiting colleges with Courtney and helping her make difficult decisions, the reality of being a "single parent" is forever in the forefront. This situation has been my reality for the last eight years. I am a "single/married" parent. I am married to a wonderful man, but I am unable to turn to him for assistance and support. Single parents tackle difficult decision-making every day, but that is not who I am. I haven't lost my husband (through divorce or death), known what it's like to grieve and then move forward. I grieve every day and I have to make decisions all the while I am caring for my sick spouse. It's not the same as being a single parent. I am the Head of the Household, decision maker, provider, caregiver, mother and friend while at the same time, having the responsiblity of someone else's life in my hands.

Mike's aid came in Sunday and asked to leave early. She worked from 10:30-1:30 (her hours are 9-7 on weekends). Yesterday, she wasn't showing up, so I called her at 9:10 (She's supposed to be here from 8-6 Mon-Fri.). She told me that she was in Brooklyn and would be late. Long story short, she got here at 2pm and seemed genuinely angry with ME that I asked her to come in at all (she left at 5pm). She never cared to realize that I had my day planned out. Brandon was spending the day with his friend, so Courtney and I were going to go to the movies and lunch (get some quality time in before she leaves for college). While Brandon was able to keep his plans, Courtney and I stayed home all day with Mike. We only got 1 1/2 hours in to run some errands. Mike's aid has NO IDEA what her last minute schedule changes does and I can't get her to understand. She doesn't talk to us much, she's very defensive when I do talk to her, and she's not respectful at all to me, my children or my mom/brother. Why is she still with us - you ask??? She's the only one that can get Mike to eat and drink.
Between Sunday night and yesterday morning, I only got 3 cups of juice and 1/2 breakfast into Mike. He had no dinner on Sunday to speak of, just some juice and ensure.
I believe Mike's aid knows how much we need her for Mike, and she sometimes takes advantage. I HATE being in this position.
There's ALOT going on in our home, between Courtney going off to college and Mike's aid being difficult. I just wish I had someone to help me - to be strong for me - someone I could lean on.
But I don't.....I am a "single" parent taking care of an ill spouse. This is Alzheimer's Disease.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


I never knew what you and Mike afre going through and rest assured your in my prayers. Be strong like you always have been. Love ya Vinny