My mom and I met up with my aunt to catch up on family stuff. Among the biggest topics discussed was my grandparents.
My grandmother’s memory continues to deteriorate. The most recent memory loss that has me concerned is that she could not remember the date of her wedding anniversary. My grandparents married 60 years ago this Christmas. That my grandmother could not recall that without being constantly reminded, and the fact she kept getting her anniversary confused with the December 16 anniversary of my uncle’s wedding, is a little scary. She is forgetting more and more stuff from her long-term memory. My mother and aunt do not think she realizes her grandchildren all in their 20s, with the exception of the girl another aunt adopted. My aunt has stopped mentioning my cousin’s two sons, because my grandmother just does not remember them. It is scary. Another troubling development is the news that my grandmother’s weight is now below 100 pounds, though how far below is unknown. My grandmother apparently will not eat food unless my grandfather prepares the food for her. We witnessed this firsthand when my grandmother refused to eat an offered slice of banana bread, despite wanting a bite from the slice my grandfather had taken. I am beginning to wonder if the day for an intervention is coming soon.
My grandfather seems as sharp as ever, but his mobility is a big concern, especially when we consider how well he is able to keep track of what my grandmother is doing. He is also quite stubborn, so any suggestions we have are almost immediately shot down. We have been trying to get him to allow someone to come in every now and again to help them with household chores and/or meals. He has refused each time. However, he did recently ask for my brother to go down and help them with some work around the yard. I am hoping this will open a door to allow my brother to help them around the house every couple weeks. Now, if only we could find a reasonable solution to his driving. I do not think my grandmother is driving anymore, but there is really no way to be certain. My grandfather’s reflexes are not great due to his mobility issues, and I fear for them when I know they are out and about. It is a difficult situation. One thing at a time. Right now, I am hoping that we will be able to get someone inside their house every now and again to help them with chores around the house. Time will tell.
Other topics included my cousin and her family and my aunt’s mother-in-law, who is recovering from a near fatal complications after a heart attack. My other cousin was mentioned in passing as was my brother. That cousin has come out of the closet with his immediate family, but not so much with the extended family. The only reason I have confirmation of this is because of telling pictures his sister posted online. My brother, though doing okay, still has resisted finding stable employment. These issues make talking about them with those outside the immediate family difficult. I am not sure how to address the issue around my cousin’s status. I do not agree with the lifestyle, but I realize that I have to be tolerant of it in our society, because there are many people who live that lifestyle. I want to let him know that there will be no hostility from me, but he has withdrawn from the extended family for the most part. Tough family matters.