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Diana talks about directives, part 12

Jan. 11, 2012
Lisa Newburger, L.I.S.W.-S./a.k.a. Diana Directive provides humorous ways to deal with difficult topics. Check out Diana’s webpage at
I want to JUMP out of my skin! Things are not going well. Mom has been at Sunny Acres Nursing and Recreational Facility now for what, four weeks? She is NOT happy. It is a place for “old” people, not mom. They play Madonna instead of Lady Gaga. Who would want to live in a place like that? And her annoying roommate screams all the time. I threatened the social worker to move her out of that room or expect Channel 5 to do an expose on moi, I mean, the situation. Boy, do nursing homes not want publicity. Needless to say, mom got a new roommate immediately. Just call me a rainmaker.
Not much is happening in rehab. They don’t seem to be offering half price margaritas anymore. Wait, it isn’t THAT kind of rehab! Maybe it should be, because Mom seems to be giving up. I told her therapist Rachel, “Just assign mom a hot therapist like Mark, and she’ll be doing handstands before we know it.” Does anyone listen to me? NO! Mom doesn’t respond to women the way she responds to men. No surprise there. Rachel has more or less written off Mom. Explain this. They are working with Mom to help her stand and get out of the wheelchair, but except for the physical therapy she is getting, they are using one of those lift things to get her out of bed. How is she supposed to get stronger if she only gets what, a half hour a day twice a week of working out? Me, I can’t imagine breaking a sweat in that gym with no zumba music playing. I know it isn’t about getting her heart rate up. But a motivator like Mark could fix that as well.I was F-R-U-S-T-R-A-T-E-D, so guess what I did? I broke into the therapy room after hours and did my own kind of therapy. I made Mom get off her butt and stand up. OK, it wasn’t pretty, the standing part, but she did it. I promised to take her to the midyear sale at Nordstrom’s if she stood up. But then again, she could get some pretty amazing Jessica Simpson high heels to wear in her wheelchair. Who needs to stand in them anyway? They are just coddling her here. She needs a drill sergeant like me to figuratively kick her in the backside. Even though Mom still can’t talk, she snarled at me when I did this. That is fantastic! She is getting back to normal! But will she ever be normal? She wasn’t before. But now? I don’t know what the future holds. Will she be able to leave this nursing home down the road, or is this where my entire inheritance is going to go?Things are getting a little better at work. Marissa, my office manager, has been very supportive with my schedule. Even Iris has calmed down and just ignores me now. But this has been going on now for months. I’m getting sick of it. I don’t want to go to the nursing home all the time. When do I get a chance to do the things I like to do? This balancing between work and home life is really stressing me out. I think I even have a worry line on my forehead from all this pressure. This isn’t good. Who is going to want me with such imperfections? I have to fit in a visit to my doc to get a little Botox to take care of this. But who has the time?When I get home each night, I don’t want to do anything but go to bed. That is if I can even find my bed. My house is a disaster, because I foolishly forgot to pay my maid. And you know how it is with clothes in the morning. I try on so many different outfits that I have no time to put the other ones away. Looking good still matters to me, but not as much as it did before. I’m just always so tired now. So, my bed is filled with clothing. Don’t even talk to me about dating because I don’t even date anymore. Am I going to be old and alone? Will no one want me because I’m no longer hot? I shudder at the thought.If you understand what I’m going through, please email me at [email protected]. Having a mom in a nursing home is a real trip. Please help me keep my sanity. Every time I hear from my readers, I realize you do understand. You’re living this same experience. Talk to you soon.Editor's Note: To read past installments of "Diana Directive," please click here.