Helping Dad

Dad at home, Hendersonville, Tennessee.  February 27, 2009.

Dad at home, Hendersonville, Tennessee. February 27, 2009.

When I was growing up, Dad could fix or do just about anything.  Did we have an electrical problem?  No need to call an electrician — Dad fixed it.  Trouble with the plumbing?  No problem, Dad could get it fixed.  Do we need an addition to our house?  Dad could do it himself.

When they moved to Hendersonville in 1963, my parents bought a house with an unfinished basement.  Dad finished the basement himself, making a separate living unit with kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, utility room and living room.  Since it was much easier to heat and cool than the upstairs, they moved downstairs several years ago.  You can see part of the kitchen Dad built in the background of the picture above.

I never thought of Dad being unsure about what to do with any fix-it project.  I guess that’s what is so sad about the present situation.  My parents had a leak in the plumbing behind their washing machine.  Dad knew he couldn’t fix it (he’s now legally blind), but he didn’t want to call a plumber before I saw the situation.  That’s why Betsy and I went to Hendersonville yesterday (Monday).

We called a plumber who will go to my parent’s house this (Tuesday) morning.  Betsy and I will go back and hopefully get there before the plumber leaves.  Hopefully we can help Dad get the answer to any questions he might have and feel comfortable with the repairs that are made.  We’ll also help Mom and Dad with their weekly errands and chores.

I find it hard to get used to the idea of my Dad needing my help.  My Dad?  No Way!!

I’m glad we can help out.  It’s just sad that he so obviously needs our help.

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14 Responses to “Helping Dad”

  1. NCMountainwoman Says:

    Your dad may be unsure of the plumbing but he is absolutely sure of his son. What a compliment that he wants to pass the decisions to the one person he knows he can trust. After all you learned at his feet.

  2. Susie Says:

    It is sad when our parents starting depending on us George. But at least he’s done well until now. That’s amazing to me!

  3. Fishing Guy Says:

    George: It is wonderful that you can lend a hand in these later years.

  4. busy bee suz Says:

    I think that you are very lucky to NOT have had to do this any earlier, considering your parents ages. And the fact that your dad can’t see.
    I hope all goes well with the house repairs.
    Oh, and your Parents are so lucky to have you and Betsy to help out…and vice versa. 🙂

  5. Tricia Says:

    He looks soooo sweet! How young is your dad? My dad is getting to where he needs more & more help now, too – but my dad is only 66, so there’s a difference! But my dad has a colostomy bag, now, which he takes in stride, so we’re happy about that & as he says, “It’s better than the alternative!”

  6. imac Says:

    Nice post George, you must feel proud of your Dad.

    Mine had a stroke at the age of 47 and died at the age of 56, after 9 years of not being to help himself.

  7. Cheryl Says:

    I consider it a blessing to be able to help my Mom out in any way. She brought two young children up on her own when my father walked out on her, worked full-time, has beat cancer seveal times and retired from work at the age of 72. She has never, ever complained about her lot in life once and I can only hope I can be more like her. And yes, it does seem strange to have to care for parents who so lovingly brought us up, but it goes full circle.

  8. JennJilks Says:

    That’s what my dad was like – when he had dementia – he couldn’t figure out the phone or TV clicker. So upsetting.

    Been there, done that for my parents. Mom died at home, Dad in long-term care. It was so traumatic; both with cancer.
    So difficult changing from dependent to adult to caregiver. Lovely honour.

  9. Happyone Says:

    I can see how it would be kind of sad to see your dad not being able to do all he wants to do anymore. You are lucky to have him around to love though. I miss my dad a lot.

  10. Happily Retired Gal Says:

    How wonderful to have your dad in your life and that you’re able to help out too. Mine died when I was 30 and I miss him lo these many years later!
    Hugs and blessings,

  11. Tina Says:

    How nice to have a son and daughter-in-law like you two….It must be extremely hard to ask for help..once one has been soooooo independent all their lives..something I think me and the hubby will also find hard to do..its great you are close and can help out when they want you to…and it even more wonderful that they are doing so well with out you!! meant in a nice way of course..

  12. Jen Says:

    I’m glad your dad trusts you and calls you for assistance. My father in law is 93 and won’t ask for help.
    He thinks he can do it all, including taking care of his 93 year old wife with alzheimers. Not a good situation.

  13. Rose Says:

    It is hard to see the people we love age….but it is a blessing for him to have you guys to call, and that he does call you.

  14. MaryBeth Says:

    Well you know time does reverse things and now with gladness in your heart you can return the favor by being the helping hand that your dad always was.. take care. MB

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