I hope everyone had a good summer.
Time for Fall. Time for the Jewish High Holy Days. Time to sit in sack cloth and ashes and mourn the long sunny days and the sultry nights of summer. And that my summer was not anything like the summers I remember when I was younger.
I have learned many things this summer, some profound and some not so. All important.
Dad continues a slow downward trajectory but never loses the essential elements (and annoyances) of the man he is. Dad called me one morning.
SIDEBAR: how DOES he call on my cell phone and office phone simultaneously???
He was quite fussed about the bank calling him about credit and debit cards, etc. He couldn’t understand what the caller was saying.
“Dad, I will call Chase and find out. Did you give the caller any information?”
“No. Nothing, but the caller seemed to know all my card numbers.“
“That’s a good sign, Dad. There is no odd activity on your accounts [I have them linked to mine and pulled them up while we were talking]. I will call and find out and call you back.”
“Thank you, darling. I feel so much better. You will call me right back?“
I have a colleague in my office and a deadline, but this is my dad. “As soon as I get some answers. Don’t worry I am ON it.”
I call. Chase is being cautious with recent security breaches, and is sending my father all new cards. I asked about any odd activity because what I see on the computer looks to be in real time but there may have been odd charges rejected.
“I am sorry, M’am. I will need your father on the line to answer these questions.“
“I have power of attorney. His accounts are linked to mine. Why do we have to involve my Dad?”
“This has to do with his profile.“
I have no idea what this means. The most important aspect was that for all of the planning, for all of the day-to-day handling of my father’s affairs, there are some places I cannot go without his express permission on tape.
I LEARNED THAT WE NEED TO MAKE BANKS ISSUE “FORMS OF POWER OVER EVERYTHING, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, WHATEVER” so that we can sign these and be finished with the chaos. Because there is the law and there is banking law.
I call Dad back on a three-way conference.
“Dad, I have you on the phone with Chase, so that I can talk to customer service about our inquiry.”
“Don’t you already have that authority?“
SIDEBAR: I love that Dad can still identify stupidity, even in dementia. Which really makes a person wonder about banking in general. (Sorry, Mighty.)
The woman talked, doing her level best to ascertain that my father was who he was, etc., but he was too stressed and needed a familiar voice to prompt him.
“Dad, Stacy needs your name. Dad, would you tell her your name?”
SIDEBAR: I love that Dad thinks that being dad is who he is.
“Daddy, that is great. Can you give your full name now??”
So, he pretty much got the information right.
“Dad, that last question was do you give me, [Blogger], permission to talk to Stacy about your affairs.”
“Of course; I thought we did that already.”
“Ok, Dad, you can hang up now and I will call you back shortly.”
“Ok, darling. I love you.“
“I love you, Daddy. Thanks. I will call you back soon.”
All was ok. I resolved the matter and recapped with Dad.
“I am a lucky man, to have the kids I have.“
“We are lucky. These things are complicated and we can do this for you. And we want to do this for you.”
“With nothing to worry about, I might live past 120!!“
“Don’t worry, Dad, we have that covered, too, but your children will be on social security, so we will have to pool resources. . . . ”
Another day, another problem resolved.
WHAT I LEARNED (AGAIN):
- Little kids, little problems.
- Big kids, big problems.
- Aging parent, a combination of both and . . .
And I can only hope that, from day-to-day, there are mostly little problems until the day that it is THE BIG PROBLEM.