Changes upon changes
To the outside observer, it might seem a bit curious for me to say that. I spoke with my father today. We haven't spoken in a little over a week. Truth be told, we haven't spoken since, well, he moved into an assisted care facility.
On Valentine's Day, Dad moved into the assisted care facility at Shell Point. We knew this day would come. We knew it would come pretty soon when Pam and I were down in FL for Christmas. He couldn't hide it anymore. It was very obvious. Very obvious. Pam and I were overwhelmed in just the few days there, so we can't imagine what things were like for Mom. So objectively speaking, this was a very good thing.
I was afraid. I was afraid that he was getting railroaded. I was afraid that he wasn't going to be happy. I was afraid that his quality of life was going to be, well, ruined. So we didn't talk since he moved in. I just couldn't face it. It's shameful. But today I called him. I waited until I had an unequivocally good day. My fitbit has already changed the way I interact with my fitness. So in addition to taking a crapload of steps today, I took a spinning class. I saw some friends there, then I went and had some soup at Rev Soup. Then I was ready. I called Dad's new home phone number. He answered, and we talked for an hour. It was great.
He's doing spectacularly well. It was amazing talking to him. He sounds so happy. He's found a community there, and he doesn't feel pressured to not be himself. And you now, the lack of pressure really makes things easier for him. He actually sounded a lot better than he has in at least a year. It's a change for Mom and Dad. A huge change. Obviously. But it sounds like a very positive change. Dad is happier than I've heard him in a long time. He's around people with similar skills and abilities. He's around people who can care for him 24/7. He's part of a community in which he feels he belongs. I can't really ask for more.
So yeah. It's actually been a really great day!