You know how people always told you that as people age they return to childhood behavior? Well, I never doubted it, but I also never realized how far reaching this reality of aging was until I moved my dad in with me.
From reading (EVERY) random sign we pass on the road, to not picking up after himself, (to potty training… shhhh), to having to be entertained (and I refuse to “sit him in front of the TV”), to making him eat what’s on his plate.
About a month ago, I got tired of being told there was too much on his plate and gave in to feeding him like he wanted to eat (and not staying on him constantly about drinking ALL his water each day). About two weeks in he started getting light headed and even was losing some visual clarity.
So I explained to him that the result of doing things “his” way had left him beginning to experience the side effects of malnutrition and dehydration. After several minutes of back and forth, and showing him the scientific research that an adult his age, even living a sedentary lifestyle, still needed a minimum of 2,000 calories per day to just maintain, he agreed to eat what I put in front of him.
Twice since then, he’s complained about the amount of food on his plate, and twice since then, I’ve had to remind him of the calories conversation and the symptoms he experienced from his malnutrition and dehydration. So far, he stays in his seat and finishes his plate, but I don’t look forward to the time when I have to tell him he is not allowed to get up from the table until he finishes everything on his plate.
2 thoughts on ““Just sit there until you finish…””
I have similar experiences with my 89 year old mother. She is still the same dynamic, aware and dare I say it know it all that she has always been. But unfortunately her reasoning has become disconnected with reality. She doesn’t agree with me helping her dress or bathroom break reminders and calls me bossy. She doesn’t like that I hire people to stay with her in her apartment when I have to go to work and out and says she doesn’t need them. When I point out that when she’s on her own for too long she falls and then the emt crew are called and she goes to the hospital she tells me that she likes the emt ppl and going to the hospital (not true)
It’s a strange reversal of our roles- She often sighs and says sadly “When your child becomes your mother. . .”
And then I say “When your mother becomes your child. . .”
Thanks for the comment Sharon… yes… parenting our parents is the tough, right thing to do!