When you have a disease that’s considered the number one genetic killer of infants, getting old doesn’t cross your mind that often. At least it didn’t for me. If I didn’t think about aging I certainly didn’t fathom my parents getting old. Now that I’m 40 though it’s actually becoming reality. My Mom is approaching 68 as her birthday is less than 2 months away. Don’t tell her I spilled the beans on her age. As she ages I have to take a look at her role as a caregiver, and look to the future.
When Dad passed away a few years ago it was quite a shock. Although most kids outlive their parents, it’s not always the case with SMA. At any rate it gave me a reality check. I need to be prepared to be totally self-reliant. Not only that, I need to be aware of Mom’s needs. She’s always said doing my cares keeps her young, but I have to be careful not to over extend that. At the moment I think we have a good balance, but it’s something I always need to re-evaluate.
Being self-reliant doesn’t mean I have to do things totally on my own. Certainly when you can’t reach your face that’s not possible. Therefore I have an entire crew to help me including PCA’s, family, friends and neighbors. It is my responsibility though to coordinate everything to make sure my needs are met. Not only that, I make all of my appointments and schedule my transportation to get there. In truth it can be overwhelming, but as an adult those are my responsibilities. Besides with that stuff taken care of Mom & I can do fun things like plan our next project.
Mom has done so much for me my entire life. Thus she deserves something special for her birthday. Nothing I could give would be enough. However I know one of her least favorite things to do is grocery shopping and spending a lot of time in the kitchen. Therefore I’m getting her a Hello Fresh subscription. Ingredients delivered right to her door with easy prep instructions. Has anyone tried Hello Fresh or other subscription boxes? Fingers crossed she likes it!
Do you think about your aging parents? What steps have you taken to become self-reliant? If it’s not something you’ve thought about I encourage you to do so.