About 12 years ago, my mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Her story started like so many dementia stories do. In the beginning, it was the small things we noticed: Mom was forgetting things, starting to repeat herself and asking questions about things we’d just talked about.
When my mom was first diagnosed, she lived with my father in our family home in the country outside of Farmersville, Texas. As her dementia progressed, my dad became her primary caregiver. My sister lived just down the hill, and she and her husband took it upon themselves to check in on our mom and dad regularly. At first, this worked well.
Then, my dad got cancer. His condition worsened quickly, and he passed away. My sister, who lived nearby, told me and my siblings (there are five of us) that she planned to have mom move into her home. We were grateful for her offer, but we also didn’t want her to have to shoulder the burden of caregiving all on her own. We came to an agreement: our mom would move in with our sister, and we’d hire in-home care to supplement what she was providing so she didn’t get worn out.
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