• Title: Changing Places: A Journey with my Parents into Their Old Age
  • Author: Judy Kramer
  • Released: 2001-08-01
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 256
  • ISBN: 157322880X
  • ISBN13: 978-1573228800
  • ASIN: 157322880X
From Publishers Weekly Beginning as a series of newspaper columns recording how she cared for her parents, Kramer's work blossomed into a poignant book that plumbs the depths of love, loss and the ties that bind. "At times, traveling with my parents into their old age has felt like a forced march," she observes. "Often I have not wanted to go. But it gives me great satisfaction that we have dealt with the roadblocks, followed the detours, found the route, and made the trip together." The core of Kramer's book charts the course of their intertwined lives, from the point she began taking over the caregiver roleAmanaging her parents' finances, driving them to doctors' appointments, helping them move to a nursing home and so on, all while working full-time and caring for her own familyAthrough their deaths within two months of each other and the unexpected difficulties she had navigating the shoals of grief. Along the way, Kramer had to learn everything from what a durable power of attorney is to how to deal with bureaucratic complications, negotiate the vagaries of medicaid, step back when her parents made choices she felt weren't the wisest and find innovative ways to make their lives more comfortable (such as using a music stand to stabilize books that shaky hands could no longer hold). Kramer shares her frustrations and triumphs with candor; her memoir should resonate with anyone facing similar experiences. (Sept.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Kramer's aim is not to advise readers on how to care for aging parents but to describe how it feels to do so. She writes from the two-year experience of caring for her parents as they moved from their private home to a nursing home and through the slow deterioration into death. Kramer, a journalist, chronicles how she balanced marriage, career, and caring for children and aging parents in a process she describes as "one continuous exercise in triage." She describes feelings of anger, resentment, and helplessness at dealing with the needs of her parents and the demands of insurance companies and Medicaid. By recounting such mundane occurrences and minor victories as her father learning to navigate the length of the hall in the nursing home on his walker or her mother regaining the ability to read with the help of new glasses and a music stand, the author raises the reader's interest level. When her parents die eight weeks apart, Kramer begins the process of "caregiver withdrawal" and grieving. This is an eloquent and touching look at a common experience. Vanessa Bush
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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