Sunday, October 10, 2010


Nonna means "grandmother" in Italian- This is a post about my Mother in Law who lives in a hillside village outside of Florence Italy.She is now 88 years old, and still living by herself (by her choice)

We have seen a decline in her mental state over the past few years, with a noteable decline within the last 6 months. So much so that Guido (my husband) had purchased a ticket to go to Italy in early November - with the plan to convince her that she needed to accept help in her living situation.
 This is a picture I took of Cosmo and his Nonna (grandmother) in December 2006.

Well, last Monday the world spun just a bit too fast and she took a bad step and broke her leg. Luckily, she was out walking in her village and she was brought to the hospital by ambulance. (we have been fearing a fall in her house- knowing that she wouldn't be "found" for a long time) She was operated on successfully on Wednesday, and is possibly getting out of the hospital today. 

The problem is- her mental state.She is quite confused about where she is- thinks that she is at home- and what is happening- she claims that I have been visiting her- While we know that some of this is due to the medication we have also begun accepting that she is experiencing some form of dementia.
It has become clear that we cannot bring her home again, for her own health and safety.

Guido is currently with her in Italy- he cashed in his vacation time and is staying for a month (if not more) his mission is to find her a safe and reliable living situation. We don't know what her reaction will be to not returning to her home, but because of it's layout it may not be possible for her to be there. SO- we have no choice but to put her in a nursing home in Italy- 

It's tearing us apart- we really wanted to bring her here -to the US- to be near us so we could oversee her care- BUT-----she isn't a US citizen, speaks very little English, and wouldn't have medical insurance. I guess sometimes circumstances make our choices for us, but this is a bitter pill to swallow.

I am hoping by writing this here that one of my brilliant readers could have information about how we could bring her here..I know it's a longshot, but we are just distraught about having to leave her somewhere without our supervision. Moving back to Italy is a very last resort possibility- it would mean that we both would lose our jobs (and I would lose my business that I have been intensely creating over the past few years) and our son would be uprooted from his school (though some time learning Italian would do him good)

thanks for reading this- If you have any suggestions I would like to hear them- until she is in a good situation we will be a divided family. I can handle it- but for our son, it stinks. I guess I should feel thankful that I at least know that My husband isn't at war- and that I don't have to worry about his safety on top of it all.

thanks once again- 
ciao ciao- Maureen

1 comment:

Roberta said...

Maureen, I am sorry that you are all going through this right now. You are in a very unusual situation. I agree that it would be very hard for her at this time in her life to come here. Even if you could bring her here, the language issue for her, I am sure would be awful. If she comes here would she live with you then? That would seem to be the only thing that would make sense. But then the insurance thing...I don't know how that works. It seems like it would not. I feel for your family. I really do. My parents are an hour away and I stress over them all the time because they refuse to move. I cannot imagine if they were in another country. I am sorry I am not more help. I hope it all works out for you guys. Keep us posted.


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