Those of you who know me or have read my Squidoo caregiver lenses are aware of my situation with my mother. Briefly, she has a degeneration of the cerebellum and alzheimer's. She cannot stand up or speak or feed herself or go to the bathroom without help. I take care of her 24/7.
Sometimes I can get someone else to stay with her so I can get out of the house. Usually, it's one of my sisters. A local caregiver's resource called on my birthday when I hadn't had any respite for three weeks. They said there was a grant from the government to pay for respite for those who need it most. I somehow qualified, and they sent a nurse's aid out to the house for five hours a week for two months. So I have this until the end of March.
It's strange to go outside when you haven't been out of the house for weeks. The air feels cool and fresh. The trees and flowers have bright lurid colors. The sun is too bright.
And then we went to see ALICE IN WONDERLAND in 3D.
At first, I wasn't sure I wanted to leave a stranger in the house with my helpless mother (mostly out of shame for my poor housekeeping). But this agency has bonded employees who are certified nurses' aids. And the people they sent have all been great. Two of them even did laundry! I don't even mind that they put Mom's socks in my drawer and my pajama top in Mom's closet.