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It’s snowing like crazy here in New England and because of the bad weather adult day care was cancelled yesterday.
My mother attends Sarah’s Place in Haverhill, MA. She’s been going there since December of 2010. I love this place.
When I was first choosing service for my mother I visited many different adult day facilities. Although they all had their strengths, Sarah’s Place was a good fit for my mother. The staff is all wonderful, caring people, overflowing with patience and kindness.
But when bad weather hits they cancel, and rightly so. As her caregiver, it does however throw a wrench into my work schedule. I was stuck (and believe me, it feels like stuck) with what to do with her all day.
My mother is an interesting person. Most days she vacillates between being very groggy and sleeping a ton, to being consumed with anxiety provoking thoughts. Watching the news is all but banned in my house, primarily because she hears snippets of information and then focuses her attention on the one piece of bad news she’s grasped.
She’ll spend hours asking me the same questions over and over again. For example, I made the mistake of watching the weather before the storm hit. She heard words like blizzard, power outages, blowing and drifting, storm surges, severe winds, downed trees, treacherous roads. Ugh – what was I thinking!
All words to create the most anxiety one person can feel for one simple snow storm. It does get people to act here in New England. No one wants a repeat of the Blizzard of ’78. I lived through that storm and it was monumental.
So yesterday, I had to answer the same questions over and over and over and over, and over ….oh, sorry. I got lost in the repetition of the word. Kind of how I feel when I’m answering the same question for the fifteenth time.
“Will we lose power,” was at the top of list, closely followed by, “What will we do if we lose power?” Of course other less pressing questions were thrown in for good measure.
Round and round we went with the question and an answer portion of the show. I understand no matter what I say, it’s not going to alleviate her anxiety. She’s anxious and that’s just the way it is. Sleep is the only remedy that will stop the cycle.
It’s really hard not to scream at the top of my lungs, “shut the hell up.” I don’t really want to say hell, but I didn’t want to write a big, bad swear word.
I’m sure there are countless people out there wrestling with the same problem. Caregivers all over New England cursing Mother Nature for screwing up their day and stealing away their alone time, free from their loved one.
It’s a mean thing to do Mother Nature, I say to myself as I look out the window, watching the snow pile up, hearing the howling wind and seeing snow flying in all directions.
And then, the power goes out, and I hear my mother say, “Oh no, did we lose power?”
God help me.