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  • Nina called me today from my parent’s home. She was so upset, speaking Spanglish and asking if I was aware of what my parents are doing to her? I tried to explain that they have no choice. Her doctor and a state appointed social worker have demanded that my parent’s place her in assisted living. I could not tell her that my mom’s health is at risk too. My mother has her own physical issues and she is exhausted. Nina has become an energy vampire to my mother and keeps verbally attacking my mom when she is weak and needs to rest. She calls my mom lazy and says that she treats her dog better than my grandmother. My father said that my mother’s doctor believes that my mother’s health is in danger. Now whenever I talk with my mother, she falls apart, and cries. She asks: “How can I tell her that she has to move to an elderly facility? She will never forgive me”. My mother feels like a failure as a daughter.

    Nina sees my parents as the bad guys she believes that they are going to sell her home, buy a bigger home for themselves and go on long European trips. She will not listen to reason about why they are dealing with lawyers. The loan on her home is the only way to pay for her care. She said that she just wanted all of her granddaughters to know what my parents are doing to her. She feels like she is being thrown out with the trash. My parents have worked hard to find a nice place where she will have her own apartment. It has a kitchenette, sitting room and bedroom. When she wants to be around people, she can go to the banquet room, sitting area or go outside. People will be around her and nurses will be close by if needed.

    At one point my parents were afraid that Nina would have to share a room with a complete stranger because of lack of funds. They had to put a non-refundable deposit on the last room available at this facility. Nina needs to move in by Friday, March 7, 2014. She does not know how quickly this move will happen.

    She is crying now and I can’t comfort her; I can’t make it right. I feel like I am letting her down after all that she has done for me. I know she would not do well in the cold, wet northwest. I did offer her that option, she said no. I have stairs and hills to climb and I just can’t save her. It is unimaginable to realize that somewhere along the line, we loose our independence in this country. Someone else makes the decision for us.

    I felt a bond sever when she realized that I was not going to stop this from happening. She does not understand; I tried to explain. She is no longer listening to me. All I can do is listen to her. Her voice has weakened; she has become a frightened, untrusting little girl. Now, she is mad at me, I am a disappointment too. It feels as if she thinks that I am abandoning her in a time of need. She is lashing out, sobbing and wants to hang up now. She said she is tired about talking about this. I said: “Okay, I love you Nina”. She answered: “I love you too Audrey (she pronounces it as: Ah-thee)”. “Bye, bye. Click! Silence…

    Now I am crying. My heart is heavy and her heart is broken.

    Photo #1: Nina 2012 at my sister's birthday party in Las Vegas, Nevada. She is asking for a hug from my niece.
    Photo #2: Nina and I in 2008 during one of my visits to Las Vegas. We were so happy to see each other again.
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