Yur gonna miss the the log-on squeel, Lew. DSL is always there..no
more anticipation if your log-on will take hold...
I miss those rough-and-tumble 56k days... the romance has all but
disappeared... simpler times. 300 baud. When the text would slowly
claw its way upon the screen, stretching the abilities of the AST six-
pack set to 80 column width...just to find out that that new-found
love from the chat room was a dog. An actual dog.
I guarantee that at one time, some 20 years ago in my BBS days, I could tell
you the connection speed just listening to the modem to modem handshake.
AAMOF, somewhere in a trunk of old computer parts in my office closet is my
ancient US Robotics 14.4 that was so fast when it was introduced that you
had to install seat belts on the chair for when it connected. ;)
After you get the DSL up and running you may just shake your head and think,
what took me so long. Remember black and white TV's with a single speaker
and took a minute or two to come on? This is a bigger difference.
And I was the last person on earth that finally got a cell phone in the last
That isn't going to happen, be damned if I'm going to have an
electronic nurse maid strapped on the hip.
I'm just not that important that a call can't wait.
My goal in life empty my key ring, then throw it away.
In my mind, I am seeing a man in a billowy white robe walking the
earth with his staff in search of truth. A complex man, with simple
Are you and David Carradine buddies?
Spend some time sailing and you develop a whole different outlook on
life, especially if you don't crank up the diesel jib when the wind
dies down for a while.
You learn a certain degree of patience or you quit sailing.
Having parents in their mid 80's, my phone is so that they can get me when
ever they need to. My parents, son , wife, older sister and BIL and I all
got on the same plan. In the past month we used 90 minutes between the 5 of
us. Only very close friends and family will get the numbers. I also look
at it as an electronic leash but after my wife had been rear ended on the
highway 2 times in the past 6 months I decided I'd better get her a phone
SFWIW, my mother will turn 103 next month and is still back in Ohio,
2,400 miles away per GPS.
She was living alone until a year ago when she fell and suffered a
compound fracture just above the right ankle.
She is now in a nursing home, but has a cordless phone with a lot of
numbers plugged in, including my own.
We talk at least twice a week
SFWIW, my mother was wearing her medical alert around her neck. She
managed to push it while she still could.
Paramedics were there in less than 10 minutes.
Without that alert, she would have blead to death.
For those of you with parents living alone and in their senior years,
wearing that alert will give you both a lot of peace of mind.
I insisted that mom wear it if she wanted to stay alone.
Think about it.
Good for you in getting her to wear it. I would love it if mine would
as well, but they are too damn stupid to do it.
My father cannot stand by himself, he cannot walk without a walker,
fix a meal, drive, or go to the bathroom by himself. He has fallen so
many times he has constant oozing of open wounds on his arms.
BUT... he thinks if he gets the emergency button to wear that people
will think he is old and dependent on others.
He hasn't been able to figure out that others have deduced that
without the button.
It was not optional, she knew she wasn't going to win an argument with
her son who learned how to be stubborn from his mother<G>.
May I suggest some professional help.
Back in Ohio there is a state funded group called "Adult Protective
Services", hopefully you have a similar resource where you live.
It is staffed by social service pros who are trained specifically to
deal with the elderly.
One of their primary goals is to keep people OUT of nursing homes.
A case worker will come out and interview your parents and help them
determine if they can be of service providing services such as light
houskeeping, help with meal preparation or maybe "meals on wheels",
transportation to doctors, etc, etc.
Point is they are real pros at what they do and are not restrained by
the parent/child relationship.
It is much easier on your parents to accept, if the advice comes from
a 3rd party rather than a child
SFWIW, they provided services that kept my mother at home for at least
3-5 years, and out of assisted living/nursing home environment.
Not only did it help to keep mom happy, it was a lot less expensive
than a nursing home.
Thanks for taking the time to get out that info, Lew. It is important
that everyone realize that while all communities don't have state or
county senior services, a great deal do. Our city has assistance for
them as well.
As you say, SFWIW, here's my end of that deal.
We didn't get outside assistance for my parents for years as they
thought it was the responsibility of their children to take care of
them. However, there was a wrinkle in their plan. One sister lives
over three hours away and has two kids. The other is a busy executive
that "can't be bothered". Both have come to the table when there is
heavy problem solving to do, but the in and out daily grind is left to
their son. In their eyes, since I am self employed, I don't really
have a job at all.
Also, I am the only one that answers my cell phone.
I will spare you commentary on how rough my relationship with them has
been for the last several years. Strokes, heart attacks, diabetic
comas (scary), fall after fall, the flu, infected this or that,
pneumonia, long days and nights at the hospital, doctor's appts.,
follow up appts., lab test readings, and on and on have been part of
my life for many years now.
Finally I gave up, as I couldn't take it any longer. My business was
suffering; my relationships were really suffering. I couldn't get
that across to them no matter how I tried, and I did try about 30- 40
times to get that through to them. I never could. In self defense
(and about 10 years into this) I told them not to call me anymore. I
finally talked to a really sharp family counselor that got me
connected to the right people and we started down a better road for
My Dad screwed that up several times by telling the case worker he
didn't need help. And in truth, he didn't as long as my dumb ass was
around. However, that all changed when I told my sisters that I felt
like I had done enough to get my ticket punched for The Glory Train,
When all of us kiddos were at the interviews, dear old Dad didn't
stand a chance. He couldn't lie anymore. He couldn't convince them
that he could do all manner of physical activities including exercise,
get up and down as he pleased, and go up and down the step to their
den as needed to.
So, he now has some aid. In fact, he has different services that do
different things for them. But with me causing strangers to be in
their house, handling them and their possessions, it caused some deep
rooted bitterness towards me as they felt betrayed. For a couple of
years, my father literally did not speak to me, (three to be exact) as
he felt like I had abandoned them. He was so pissed off we never even
saw each other. (It actually turned out to be a good vacation from
them for me.)
While they are over their anger at me now, it was the health care
people that sent the worker over that stole their stuff. This has got
to be every senior citizen's nightmare, to have a stranger in your
home that steals your valuables and your memory laden belongings.
Both my folks wanted the services stopped. But once again, with all
three kids (are you still a kid if you are middle aged?) at the task,
we kept up the services.
We have a lady that comes three days a week and does all the things
you spoke of. It is a Godsend. They have company now, and that is
great. Just human contact besides their doctors had been great for
them. The four hour visits they get insure clean clothes, showers,
fresh food, and a hot meal. With the state kicking in, it costs them
about $120 a week, and worth every penny.
We even have them hooked up with a city transit bus that will pick
them up for their doctor's appts., and they have a bay that holds
wheechairs, so they are set.
Yeah, this is a much better solution. Their $480 a month would no
doubt blossom to at least 10X - 15X that if we put both in a home.
But I have to tell you, until I got them put on this program, that is
where they were going.
Humm, I have 2 sisters and am the only son also. Almost daily I have lunch
and keep check on my parents and do the little things that need to be done.
Work out that IRA that did not roll over correctly, research a security
company after a recent break in, answer computer problems and fix computer
problems, keep the yard up, etc. You know the drill. Both of my sisters
recently retired as they have hit the social security age and depend heavily
on SS, and I the 10 year younger brother that was fortunate enough to retire
at 40, 13 years ago from the automotive field and am now self employeed and
also does not really have a "real job". What is it about being self
sufficient and on top of managing time and money that makes our parents
feel that we do not have a job at all? I guess we make it look too simple.
I feel for you Robert, fortunately my parents continue to live in good
health considering their age.
Sounds like we are traveling a lot of the same ground, Leon. Not
nearly as much fun in the "golden" years as it should be.
I appreciate it. But don't feel too bad. I always do a comparative
analysis of things when I am trying to assess problems.
Here's the lady I feel sorry for: She has a tiny house, and had to
move her mother into it with her as they couldn't afford any kind of
care, not $500 a month, nothing, towards help. And certainly can't
afford a nursing home.
So this lady's 93 year old mother lives with her daughter who isn't
really in good health herself. Her daughter gets up in the morning
and feeds her, then gets her mother set up in front of the TV, then
goes to work. She comes home every day to feed her mother at lunch.
Then goes straight home after work to make sure that her mother is OK,
and to "clean her up" if needed. Then she feeds her, and puts her to
She also takes her mother to all her doctors appts., and even
occasionally to church.
This woman has absolutely no shred of personal life. She is never
alone, and she is completely trapped in this situation.
I honestly don't know how she does it.
Nor do I, but there are uncounted thousands in that situation and worse
continuing to cope (some of them).
Fortunately, folks were prescient enough to have purchased LTC insurance
and when Mom got past where the assisted living was adequate there was
help financially available. We (and I can't bless my wife enough) were
still there multiple times per week, did all the personal errand stuff,
and so on...it's not easy no matter what but at least some planning
ahead can help, particularly w/ the financial end. Unfortunately, too
often that planning followed by action is put off too long or ignored
Unfortunately, LTC insurance is out of the financial reach of many, if not
most, of the folks in this country, is poorly understood, and ripe with
Before rushing out willy nilly to buy it, it would behoove anyone
considering it to visit:
I'd venture not out of the reach of most partaking of this group and
like anything else does need care in choosing a reputable vendor. It
does, of course, require a personal commitment to use some funds for
something other than short term gratification.
The return on Mom's policy paid more than total in premiums for both
their policies in about 2 years and the combination of it and her SS
benefit made up virtually the whole expense of the nursing home care.
As in any insurance, it's expensive unless and until you need it.
Sure it's wonderful to have it you can afford it, but your one example does
not make for a good judgment call on the matter.
Consumer Reports: "But will such insurance really work? A CR investigation,
for which we reviewed 47 policies, reveals that for most people,
long-term-care insurance is too risky and too expensive. "
Another must read before considering.
Everybody has to make the judgment on their own conditions and best
information they can obtain, certainly.
A history of dementia or Alzheimer's, particularly in the immediate
family would be an integral part of that consideration.
The single example simply points out that it _can_ greatly alleviate a
material concern of wherewithal that might otherwise aggravate an
already difficult situation.
I consider it a matter everybody ought to _seriously_ consider which is
all I have recommended (and still do).
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