Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Searching for Stability

Grandma E. is definitely going to a nursing home, and now everyone is calling me for advice. Fortunately, emotions are not running so high anymore, and the relatives are no longer pressuring me to welcome a cat into the House of Asthma. Instead I dispense vague words of wisdom about durable power of attorney and living will and lookback period -- frequently punctuated by reminders to call her lawyer.

Youngest grandson is taking both cats, as one of them used to be his. Favored grandson is going through her papers and paying her bills; he's decided to keep her apartment until she is settled into the nursing home. Once she's discharged from the hospital she's going to a temporary placement until a spot opens up in the permanent facility. Homeless Relative will housesit the apartment (how convenient!) and will be put in charge of sorting the mail and forwarding it to more responsible people.

Once she's in the nursing home, what will happen to the thousands of books in her apartment? The furniture? Homeless relative?

I am stalling here, refusing to go to New Jersey and help. Too many cooks spoil the broth. I am already dealing with as much as I can handle. And I'm hoping that she won't die during an inconvenient time of the semester. Unlike my students, I do not go to funerals -- especially not out-of-town funerals.