A Financial Adviser shared this saying with me after I reached out to him to help some clients who have dozens of banking and retirement accounts. As a Daily Money Manager, I work to simplify their lives, minimize the money they are spending on things they don’t use, shield them from fraud and predatory vendors, and help connect them with the right resources to best serve their interests. Sometimes it’s an Elder Care Attorney, sometimes a Home Care Aide, sometimes an Aging Life Care Manager, and sometimes it’s a Financial Adviser. In a few cases, it’s been one of each.
The Adviser used this expression in response to a conversation about some beliefs we have about managing money and I think it really applies to the world of caregiving in many ways.
First off, Mark Twain is credited with the complete quote: “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”
I recently had a discussion with a family that was struggling to help their Dad. They wondered when it was time to consider moving him into a memory care community. I have seen over-and-over again what happens to individuals when you wait too long. They have a hard time adapting to their new community.
“But Dad doesn’t like people, he’s always been a loner.”
Everyone needs to do what feels right to them, and to serve the best interests of their loved ones. In many cases, what our loved ones like changes over the course of their dementia. My mother who was a Life Master at Bridge, didn’t enjoy cards once she could no longer keep track of bids. The woman who hated TV would choose to sit and watch it some days over doing a painting activity — and she had been painting since the 70’s.
In the same way it pained me to lose my mom bit by bit, seeing her no longer find enjoyment doing the things she loved to do was a double-whammy. What I did see was that my mom started to enjoy activities I would have never guessed at her memory care community.
What I thought I knew when it came to advocating for my Mom, wasn’t always so. Give your self the time and space to consider the options. Your loved ones are lucky to have you. Remembered.