Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Spend it down & mental support

I attended church with DH this past weekend, we belong to two different denominations, so once a month I attend his church. I'd been pressuring him to talk to an elder or the pastor, particularly one elder who is professionally knowledgeable. But, for obvious reasons he's put it on the backburner, and so I took it upon myself to talk to two deacons who also happened to be friends, and tell them what is going on.

Prior to service, friend deacon, let's call him D1/. Deacon#1, was supposed to be greeting. My DH was teaching Sunday School and so left me in the foyer with D1 and coffee/tea. D1 is a bachelor with parents in their 80s and so he also talked about the challenges  to attempting to look out for his independent living parents. As people milled through, heading either to snag a seat in the sanctuary or arrive late to Sunday School, Deacon #2 (D2) arrived and joined us. D2 is also a bachelor but his parents are deceased and he had to take over and care for his father before he passed.

D2 told me that with his father the nursing home his father was supposed to go to from the hospital approached him regarding a long-term financial plan. We sorta, kinda have a place in mind for Mom, but since DH hasn't signed or committed to anything, this was the first of us hearing such a thing. Our concern was that there wasn't enough money left for years of care (and we would like her to live as long as possible). D2 told us with his father the nursing home talked about a spend down program. The idea is that you spend down all the money that is left, down to the last $1,000 and then Medicare takes over.

I'll have to research this, but it gave me a sense of relief.

Yes, Mom won't have anything left to pass on to her kids or grandkids. But that's okay, the main point is that she will be cared for and that's all we care about.

After service, I kept an eye out for an elder, not the financially savvy one, but the one DH loves best. DH joined D1 & D2 in chatting as I scolded crazy kids who were running around like chickens with their heads cut off. We talked some more about our situation with Mom and D1 & D2 provided more advice and emotional support. When I saw that the elder I was looking for disengage from another post-service conversation and walk over to his wife, I signaled to DH that he should go to that elder. DH was able to make an appointment for later this month to talk to the elder.

My beloved DH tends to keep things close to the vest, not saying anything till it is complete or he has all the information, which could be never. So without prodding, he probably would not let on to anyone at his church that anything was going wrong. Which is absurd, because he knows how the church supports its members who are going through challenging things, with assistance, counseling, and sometimes money from the Deacon's Fund. It was good just to talk to D1 & D2, they were very helpful and supportive and I think we are in a better place because of them. 

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