I have been with my 86-year-old mother with Alzheimer's 24/7 for the last year and a half. I've had four days off. My mother was briefly hospitalized for syncope which was followed with a found of home health therapists who arranged respite care for four hours a week. Three weeks ago, I put my mother in a daycare program -- good facility, loving people. She goes three days a week and she hates it. I realize she is probably scared and unsure about what is going on. Also, I know that you must allow time for any transition, and I'm trying. But it is so difficult to see her so unhappy . The problem seems to be the fact that I'm not there. The daycare workers say she is at her best when she has plenty to do and they try to make sure she does have tasks to do. But near the end of each day she starts looking for me and always thinks I'm late, although I never am. I'm sure I'm being selfish, but it is such a burden to know someone is so dependent on me. I never felt this way when I was caring for my children when they were helpless infants and I think I shouldn't feel this way now. My mother can't help her condition. But I can't help the way I feel.
I'm tired and I want my life back. My husband wants me home (we don't live in the same town as my mother and I spend most of the week at her home). I thought the daycare would be a good option and I believe it is because she is busy and interacts with people. When we are at home, she sleeps most of the day in her chair. I get her to fold clothes. I've tried other activities suggested to me and I have to sit right with her and help her take each step. We visit people, but she has communication issues and won't talk. Lots of times she dozes off when we are visiting someone.
My plan was to transition her from daycare to residential care, but I'm not sure that's going to work. She was tested and found to be at stage 6, but because of her communication issues, I'm not sure how much or how little she understands. She can still feed herself if the food is placed in front of her. And she can still manage the bathroom on her own. But most days I have to bathe her. I have to tell her which article of clothing to put on and in what order. I have to remind her to brush her teeth and help her find the toothbrush.
What I really want is a crystal ball so that I can look into the future and know that whatever decision I make it the right one. I guess for now I just need advice about the timing of residential placement and how to combat my ambivalance.