When renovating a home in preparation for habitation of the elderly, there are some things that need to be taken into consideration. At the ripe old age of 59 and 61, my parents have determined that they will not wait until it is impossible to do this chore. They thought of almost everything from remodeling their bedroom and bathroom, to moving the chest freezer from the basement to the main floor of the house. No one can blame them for doing this project.
However, in the past few years, I have recognized that they now consider themselves “old”. They think and act like old people. Of course, when it comes to physical age, it’s just a number but when it comes to mental age, it’s what you think your age is. In other words, my parents are still fairly young age wise but they act and think like a 75 year old. It is a sad thing to watch because I know that their physical abilities will match the mental age very quickly.
As for the renovation project, they have carefully considered what they need to exist just to live on the main floor of the house. The master bathroom was fitted with a walk in shower and grab bars. The toilet has a bidet attachment. They also installed central heating and air, and the kitchen floor now sports a new wooden look to limit the vacuuming. They closed in the lanai and turned it into a second office. They replaced the sticky steel door with one that closes without slamming. A lot of time, effort and thought went into making their house their home for the later years.
All of this reorganizing and renovation is a relief to me as the oldest child who lives over 1000 miles away. There are a few more things that I would like to see taken care of, and, probably given time, they may take care of them. I’d like to see them fix the step up from the carport to the office so that it is ramped thus limiting the possibility of tripping and falling. They could also install X10.com lamp controllers with an X10 wireless remote so that they could turn lights on/off without finding the light switch in the dark. Simple upgrades could make life a whole lot easier in the future.
They have effectively closed off the upstairs and the basement and simply use the main floor for living. The house is a lovely big home that suited the family in years gone by. Each of the three children had their own bedroom and life was comfortable in the old log home. But times have changed and the home is too big for just the two of them. It instantaneously becomes too small when all of us go home for a visit since now there are the spouses and seven grandchildren. However, none of us will be able to talk them into purchasing another home. They have lived there for the last thirty-seven years, and it is their intention to be buried on the property. I’m just hoping that day doesn’t come as soon as they think it will.
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