Prior to Mom's death, Dad was not doing well. His health was declining rapidly and he was feeling a burden to Mom. She had been his primary caretaker for so many years. They were in "The Accident" 49 years ago, that robbed my Dad of a normal un-handicapped life. From the minute my Dad woke from his coma, my Mom vowed to take care of him. And that she did. Sometimes we'd scold her, as she babied him. But, then again, he had always been a bit spoiled. Dad was very demanding. He had a mean streak in him. But, he also was a very dear man, that loved her very much.
One year ago, Mom and Dad decided it was time for Dad to live in assisted living. They were very stubborn and head strong refusing to hear of my Sister & I advice. My Mom always turned left when I said right. Up when I said down. It was what it was. For years, we begged her to slow down and lessen her load. I almost had them convinced to move Pops to Indy, finding a grand place... but at the eleventh hour, Mom pulled the rug and said no. So, Dad moved into an Assisted Living in their town. Not one we approved, but nonetheless, a safer environment. Dad enjoyed his stay for five months. The scariest part was the lack of any type of nursing care, whereas, if Dad fell, (which he does a lot) they can't tend to his needs. There was also a cost issue... but we needn't go into that.
My parents moved to a "side-by-side senior apartments in April of this year. Mom was exhausted. Her health was a mess. She intended on being able to care for Dad here. She wasn't able to do this. She died three weeks following their move. Dad was now alone, without any help.
He teases me as I am on it... no messing around. I have been a tough cookie when it comes to telling Dad what to do. BUT... it's paying off. He is HAPPY. He is finally getting the fact that he CAN be happy. I refuse to permit him to sit in his chair and wait to die. I have showed him a taste of life he has forgotten. We have big plans. We are going places and doing things. And we are having a wonderful time.
I can't make everyone that promised to visit him come. That is a disappointment. But, we are done waiting, we are getting out, and don't be surprised if we come knocking on your doors to visit. He needs his friendships more now than ever.