Living with an Aging Parent

My mother is 85, and she still drives and lives alone. When people see her they say “she never changes.” She took care of me when I went through two bouts of cancer, one in 2012 and the other in 2016. In short, Mom is in excellent shape for her age. But lately, she’s been moving a bit slower and seeming more like the octogenarian that she is. At first, I was dismayed by the fact that she was slowing down. The idea that she seemed more elderly and less “middle-aged” scared me. I feared that what would come soon was her death. But this was only catastrophizing. She was simply moving into a new stage of her life. In this period, she would need more help, but who knows, she could live for fifteen or so more years. Longevity runs in our family. Her grandmother was born in 1883 and lived to be 102. Gram even maintained an apartment until she was 100. Living with aging parents happens to everyone, if you’re lucky. The alternative, of course, is death. Below are several ways that I am dealing with the fact that my mother is aging and that our roles are switching; I’m becoming the caregiver, and she’s becoming the one cared for. Excerpt from Psych Central, read the full article here.

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