This is going to be an adventure I am barely prepared to take.
Mom died in 2010 from old age and Parkinson's at 84. Her body failed while her mind was still capable. She hated that, and I understand. I miss her. Dad is the reverse. He's old physically, but shuffles around just fine. He does just fine with physical activities like setting the table for meals, personal things, dressing, etc. It's his mind that is going.
He is lucid for periods; remembering investments, family, and events. Then, suddenly cannot recall where he is, who I am, or where any of his investments are. At those times, anything I tell him is forgotten immediately and asked again in a few minutes.
I and my siblings live in MD. Dad lived in FL. My brother Matt and I flew down May 18, packed all the documents, personal affects, and clothes into Dad's car. Matt drove Dad's packed car to my house. Dad transferred his car title to Matt and Matt drove home in the car. Dad (briefly?) understood that he could drive a car safely any more.
So Dad is here now with all the stuff we could fit into the car. And into a standard bedroom. It can't hold all his stuff. I have some ideas about helping with that (shallow bookcase so he can stack his folded clothes where he can see them - seemingly important to him), a shallow secretary desk with a drawer for his checkbooks and will (important to him), and a tall narrow dresser (space is limited).
My immediate concerns are to get his clothes sorted into 3 piles. Summer wear, Winter wear, and Never wear. He has enough clothes for 5 people! Most, he would never have any occasion to wear. He DOESN'T need 10 pairs of golf pants, for example.
But also, because he feels cold all the time here, he sure doesn't need the 10 pairs of shorts or the short sleeve shirts. Those have to go to Goodwill. The hardest part is getting him to wear long sleeve pants and shirts. He puts on 3 short sleeve shirts and complains his arms are cold!
I told him that he can put on warmer clothes, but I can't wear much less clothes than I do. He doesn't quite grasp that concept. Basically, he wants the thermostat at 85 (in shorts) and I want it at 70. In between is no good because I melt into a pool of sweat at 72. I want to buy him long sleeved knit shirts tomorrow.
The good news is that he loves my cooking. I'm always been a "fresh-food", pork or chicken/veggie stir fry type, with baked chicken thighs, and the occasional steak type. With salads and lots of veggies. He seems to like that too.
Sadly, he LOVES bread. I think he was making whole meals of bread before I got him up here. On the good side, I make great bread and he likes it. And he is enjoying having salad and meat with his bread. I'm taking the meals one day at a time while I figure out what he likes that is healthier. I did get him to agree to start taking my own regular "Men+50 multivitamin today (doctors orders).
My own diet is basically some meat, lots of veggies, a tossed salad, 2 glasses of red wine, and mixed fresh fruit for "dessert". I haven't introduced the fresh fruit yet, but we are going grocery shopping together tomorrow and I'll see what interests him there. Irrelevant in a way, since I will be buying a variety for myself anyway. But I need to find what HE likes.
The cats will be a problem. He hates cat fur around his bedroom. I mean, he likes cats "OK" but hates fur. So far, we are keeping his bedroom door shut all day, but that won't last. Dad forgets about the door. They had a cat until about 2000, but dad doesn't remember. MY view is that cat fur isn't fatal, but it seems to bother his (oddly variable) sense of cleanliness.
We'll work that out...
There are still 5 bags of Dad's clothes down in the basement. He thinks he has sorted through ALL his clothes. Tomorrow will be another surprise for him. Sorting confuses him. So I think I will do it directly from the bags in the basement. My idea is to present him with types of clothes (long pants, short pants, long sleeve shirts, short sleeve shirts, etc. Then ask to him to choose the best 7 of each that fits. He understands that some of his clothes should go to charity. 90%, actually, but I won't tell him THAT (because it would seem giving "away" too much". I will have him fill a box of clothes that don't fit (most of them) and remove them each day. He will forget about those each time, I think And when I present him with a bunch of donation tax reductions, he will think that grand.
Other than that, he is doing well. More next time...