My mother-in-law (Lorene) has lived with my husband and I since 2006 (73 years old). She started out very independent and was very active in our every day household. The past two years she has declined mentally and physically. She lost her oldest son to Glioblastoma Brain Cancer in 2015. His past couple months of his life we brought him home from the hospital and took care of him right here in our home. We knew she needed to be close to her oldest son and she was not able to physically go to him. If was one of the toughest things I have had to witness but am glad we did it the way we did. She has spent most of her time in the past doing things for me and my little family that it was our time to give back!
Lorene is 85 now and 90% disabled. She wants to get up and do the dishes and wash the kitchen floor like she did in the past. We encourage her to continue to try to walk daily in the house using her wheelchair, spend time with her great- grandbabies who live in the house with us and to continue reading daily! She has always been a very positive woman and a great influence in my life. Even though her body won’t do all the things she use to her mind is still pretty sharp. I try and make sure to give her a task or two to accomplish during the day so she feels needed. I ask her to match socks, fold wash cloths or hand towels, sort my mail into junk or not junk…I try and think of things she can do right from her bed!
When Lorene was younger, she spent four years in the Air Force. That is where she met her husband Walker (who passed in 2004). It was a beautiful relationship to watch. They were great role models for my husband and I. I was fortunate to have married into such a wonderful family! Both of them helped out our small family weekly. They would make 2-3 dinners per week and actually drop them off at our house! They knew my husband and I were so busy teaching and running around with active children to activities, that was their way of helping!
She receives benefits from the VA and they have been wonderful with providing her and us support to help take care of her. I am amazed with the level of care the provide. Everything we have asked for to assist Lorene, they have provided. They have provided a hospital bed, home care for a few hours weekly, two beautiful wheelchairs…the list goes on. The VA knows how to take care of their officers!
Lorene will always be the most influential woman in my life and I am so glad she doesn’t mind being in our home so that we know her needs and wants are taken care of! Do you have a special person in your life who makes a difference??