Move in day to the Veterans Home was hard. The staff made it better and bearable. He seemed to adjust overnight to the fact that this was his new home. I still fight the guilt that creeps up the inside of my throat like bad chili.
I remind myself in those moments that he’s safe. That he is now being taken care of better than he can take care of himself and better than I can take care of him. When he’s doing very well, it’s easy to question if I’ve done the right thing. But as quickly as the question arises, my dad makes a statement that is so out of left field and wrong that I know he’s in the right place.
Doing the right thing for a parent who is physically and cognitively challenged, even if that’s the thing they don’t want, is hard. Letting go of all the inappropriate and mean comments, letting go of all the times he was not there for me when I needed him, letting go of the anger of how he has lived his life, it’s like taking 100 pound stone off my back.
Now I can walk lightly next to him and love.