Okay I'm going to try and make this short, but I doubt it . Grandma has been doing great. Has been shopping for herself a couple times in the last two weeks. She loves flowers and were our house is only two years old a can honesty say we our lacking flowers. So I spent one whole day planting them where she wanted them and they do look good. She has been trying to help herself a little more and seems to be coming a regular at washing dishes which is a great help. Now my temper is becoming shorter over little things. I dont scream and yell or anything like that , but I do see myself getting a little sarcastic. Example our carpet was kinda of expensive and we have the same throughout our whole house. I dont let the kids eat or drink out of the kitchen because it is a light beige. I dont allow shoes in my house because or common sense reasons. Okay I allow grandma to drink coffee were ever she wants as she is 74 almost 75 and I dont want to treat her as a child (although she is similiar just wiser LOL) She has had a few accidents but they are were you cant see em and she will not tell me when she spills it so I can get it up while it's still wet. It's like she tries to hide it. Okay she bought herself a pair of tennis shoes to wear only in the house so the carpet wont get dirty. I think that is perfectly fine and told her so. Yet she will curl her feet up in my flexsteel leather living room suit that I paid over 5,000 for and is putting marks on it. I have asked her when she sits in the furniture to please take her shoes off, however, she either chooses to still do it or really doesn't remember either way it is driving me crazy. I love her but I also love my house and when she is gone I'm not going to be able to replace everything she is destroying. Then tonight as I was getting her bath things ready I looked in front of her dresser and see this stain the size of a baseball. It is really dark brown and looks like coffee of grease or something. I used every cleaner I had woollite, rug shampoo etc.. nothing was bringing it out. She kept saying I swear I haven't spilled anything and I told her maybe it was flower dirt that had been rubbed into the carpet, but whatever it was is wasn't coming out. The only thing I said that could have been construde as mean was grandma I dont have the money to replace things that get tore up. MY attitude (demeaner) wasn't the nicest either. She was upset but not overly. I went outside to tell my husband before he saw it and got really mad. I come back inside a she says I dont know what to do about it except to get out. I said grandma dont say things like that nobody wants you to leave. I said when one of the kids mess up something yes that upsets me but this is their home just like yours and I wouldn't want them to leave or you and just because something happens that upsets me doesn't mean that I'll stop loving you or them. Then all of a sudden she says wait a minute and moves one of her plants I had just sit to the side to make room for her lotions and creams and so on. Well that horrible spot that I had scrubbed for an hour was a shadow from the plant. A round leaf had made a horrible round shadow. So you guessed it I felt like a total butt. She started crying and said she was so scared because she didn't know how it had got there and she knew she hadn't done it .. I just held her and told her I was sorry but to please not to ever think she would ever have to leave even if it had been a bad stain. I told her that if a accident did happen I would probably get upset as we take alot of pride in our home. But that I would love her no matter what and that accidents our going to happen and I'll get over them. She was never known to be a great housekeeper and sometimes I feel as though she disrepects our property, but I dont think it's on purpose just out of never really having anything nice to have to worry about. So any suggestions on how to deal with this so that I wont over react anymore? Do you think I really need something for my nerves LOL? My husband hasn't really been home lately as he is working a second job to save up money to build this 20 x 20 out building he has been wanting for along time. I support him on this as we really need one as we are running out of space and a building is cheaper then adding on. So I have had to do all the errands for everyone including the kids and him. We had three double header softball games last week. She had a doctor's appt last week and my mom didn't come this weekend. You think I'm just being pulled into to many directions and i'm not handling them very well? I use a calender to plan everything however everyday of the month is filled up except two days meantime I have to stay up half the night just to get the housework done. Esp. the laundry with a household of six it doesn't take long to build up. She doea try really hard, but I had to sacrifice my other furniture for her to stay with us which she was worth it, but how much more do I sacrifice and I"m I being selfish? Thanks for letting me vent as I feel so guilty yet I know I dont want my belongs destroyed either. Maybe valium would be the answer then I just wouldn't care LOL . LMG By the way she has also chipped the wall with a bar stoll in several places as she pushes it against the wall and then sits in it. Now it needs spackling a new paint job.
Last edited by lovemygrandma; 04-10-2005 at 11:25 PM.
Reason: more info
with regards to the furniture, is it possible to take Grandma out shopping for a nice recliner chair that will be just for her? Something tasteful to match yours, but something she can call her very very own?? She can curl up in it (my favourite position too) snooze in it, spill her bits and pieces and lessen the impact on your nice stuff?
And with the floor, is it possible to have some throw rugs down? Perhaps a nice fake persion rug .. they clean REALLY well and don't cost a fortune.
With the wall .. is there any chance of getting a 'bumper bar' railing put in??
And I have some valium, doesn't do much, trust me ... LOL
can Grandma afford to assist you with these purchaes??
Believe me, a valium couldn't hurt! I'm a guy who's been caring for my wife for the last eight years. I quit my job at 51 to do so. When I found myself crying during some TV shows (believe me, I'm not the type that this would normally happen to), I decided to see a doctor to get an anti-depressant. The anti-depressant doesn't change our circumstances but it does even out my emotions.
As to your particular problem, well, it's all a question of priorities. I don't know the circumstances that led to you taking care of your Grandmother. I do know that people are more precious than property. My wife would probably be mortified at how I keep house - she was meticulous - but I keep her clean and comfortable. She's my number one priority. House cleaning and other jobs around the house always take a back seat to her care. Before I brought her home, medical professionals told me that I should leave her in a nursing home because I wouldn't be able to care for her (she's incontinent, paralyzed, tube fed, and can't speak). Whatever I'm doing gets interrupted if I sense that she needs anything. Sometimes, it almost seems as if she knows when Iím comfortable before she starts coughing or has a BM or something else that needs my attention. And at 3 or 4 AM, itís not always a picnic to have to deal with these things either. However this is the life *I CHOSE*. Her primary care physician once told me that if I wasnít caring for her, she would probably have died within three or four years after her stroke. So, I must be doing something right.
Thanks Sally and Jandg,
Well she could help with the purchases, but since moving 74 years of memories into my house I dont have room even for my daughters hobbyhorse LOL. I really dont want her to buy anything that some family members could say that I'm spending her money. I know paranoid. I did her book keeping tonight as there was 5 dollars unaccounted for so I just put it in her petty cash (That stays accounted for) so that it would be accounted for LOL. Jandg well She is my grandmother and basically nobody would take her and she is to coherent to be in a nursing home but not well enough to live alone. Dont get me wrong I love her very much. I have sacrificed alot so that she can stay with us and so has my husband and children. We put every penny we make into our house. My furniture cost as much as my house, When I was a single parent with nothing( I didn't even take bathtowels or anything) I drove from California to Virgina at the time with a car and my kids and their clothes in the back seat. I would spend every tax return usually around $5,500 for 6 years just buying furniture and when I re-married we continued doing that until we ran out of stuff to buy for the inside. I gave up my custom rowe sectional and a very expensive formal dinning room table and china cabinet to fit her in here. That was fine and I agree she is worth more then property, but it gets me soooo mad. Now let me tell you how she is she doesn't want anyone touching her things period. I spend no lie $450 to $500 every two weeks for groceries which feeds all of us including her. Now she will go to the store with me and get a couple of things mainly snack cakes and strawberries ETC. She hides them in her drawers and I found strawberries still in the container hid in the back of the refridge wrapped in a half a roll of papertowels. It wouldn't be so bad but she forgets she even has the stuff until it rots. I ask her why she does it and she says cause there mine. I just dont get it nor know how to handle it. Sally I am going to get a chair rail and run it around my wall thanks. I think I just need to do some soul searching and come up with a plan that wont hurt her feelings, but that wont go on for so long that I do what I did with the Shadow Stain. Oh another thing my house use to stay spotless but like the rest of the caregivers we just cant do it all. We are able to live healthy in the house but it's not like it use to be. And as you can see from the time of my posts I'm working from morning until late at night and I have to take some time for myself. Oh most forget went to movies with hb other night that was fun and I'm going to start playing bingo of course grandma wants to play bingo too and I think that will be good for her. LMG
There are so many issue going on and I really think the solutions that have been offered are **********r. What concerns me is you and how you're handling (or not handling) all the extra stressors. So, I'm going to through out some possible solutions - not knowing your other personnal or financial situations.
1) You invited GRandma in and you love having her there (most of the time). But I really don't know if GRandma is an asset to your family or not. Is she? Besides the normal helping-with-the-dishes stuff and there things she could provide your children that you are unable. Can she give them a perspective on history? Can she talk with them about her life growing up? Can the kids assist with providing support for GRandma?
2) Would Grandma be happier in an assisted living environment? You say that she's too functional for a nursing facility? Does her church have an affiliation with an ALF? DId you move Grandma from another city to live with you or did she move into your home from another location in your town/city?
3) I think this could be a woman thing but I have to wonder why all of this stuff is on your shoulders? Is it easier to do it that put up with hassle of it not being done the way you want?
4) My wife's family are all control freaks (except my mother-in-law, who is the best!). Each of the three daughters have issues about being in charge so you can imagine what holidays are like around here. Even the sister who appears to be the "freest spirit" I think controls things by being so damned independent. Anyway, when we were first married, I discovered that it would take her two weeks to get the house ready to have friends in for dinner and we're not talking about fancy china and silverware. I really had to take the time to help her realize that the dust on the china hutch was less important that the fact that people just love coming to our house. TOok me about a year but it was well worth it.
The point is, that eventually Grandma's going to pass on, and I don't think you want to remember this wonderful opportunity you could be having, and instead remember the spots on the rug, and the smudges on the chair.
Good luck and stay away from the valium. Take a quiet walk in the park...if you can manage the time. Chris
You brought up alot of great points. I love her very, very much first off. Even if I thought of her being put in assisted living she could not afford it. She did have $20,000 and then because of some really bad family issues. (accusing and Aunt of stealing her money which was not true) she gave that Aunt $5,000.00 an early inhert. So with $15,000 she would be broke in less the 6 months. The assisted living in this area does not take medicare or maybe medicare just doesn't pay. She wants to stay here and loves being here. The only confrontation so to speak we have had is over the rug (which as noted before was horrible on my part as it was a shadow) I just worry about holding things in that bother me and then getting mad about it when something small happens. I'm bad for that holding in feelings and then blowing when something small sets my off. Which dont get me wrong it doesn't happens to often maybe once a year. And when I blow I dont do anything except scream or cry. She does share history with us which is good except we usually hear the same stories over and over again cause she forgets what she tells us, however, we think it's funny and just go along with her stories as if we had never heard them. The kids cant do to much for her but they do spend as much time with her as they can and joke around with her. They have full plates with school and after school activities. She moved from another county in the same state. If you were talking about me doing everything for her and that being on my shoulders then I have to do it cause nobody else will. I would love for someone else to order her meds, take her to her dr's appointments, balance her check book, keep up with every receipt and so on so on. I dont want to be in control of all that, however, I am sorta a control freak about the way the house is run. I pay all the bills and keep track of all our money because when my husband divorced his ex wife they were $145,000.00 dollars in debt and didn't have a pot to pee in. NO furniture, no clothes, no jewlery, and a $30,000 house. They went on alot of vacations around the country though. He had told me before I found that out that he always controlled the money in their relationship. So yes when it comes to that I'm a control freak. I to am like your wife use to be if company is coming over I will clean for 2 days even the windows and I've tried to stop doing that but cant, I always tell my kids and grandma not to worry about something cause in a 100 years nobody is going to know anyway, but for some reason I cant apply that to myself. And you are right I want this to be a happy time for her and for my family and it has been with the exception of me nit picking every now and then. I have never said anything to her about the wall or anything else except the rug. I when I ask her about the food she hides I kinda just joke about it with her but it does get on my nerves seeing we are supporting her. I always feel better after posting on here and getting other people's advice I get outside perspective which I need. Thanks again Chris LMG
You are being a wonderful granddaughter taking care of your grandmother. However, you need to relax, sit back and take a broader look at the situation.
For one, your grandmother moved from her home, away from her friends, famaliar surroundings and most likely feels she lost her independence also, something very difficult to accept. She probably feels like a fifth wheel, so to speak, in another person's home. Think about how you would feel if you were uprooted, had to live without your own things or your own home.
Your grandmother lived her own life the way she wanted to for all those years and now things have changed. She is too old to change the way she is, the person she was for all those years. Everyone lives their lives differently. Many things that she does or does not do may be a result of the fact she does not see as well as she did, does not have the coordination and balance as in the past.
Your grandmother needs a relaxed loving atmosphere and at present that is not there due to your strictness and getting uptight about everything. I know, been there, done that an have reaped the negative benefits with health problems.
Let your grandmother help with things, it may not be done the exact way you would do it but I know she will do it to the best of her ability and this alone will be valuable to her, make her feel she is helping and is still a worthwhile person. As far as that goes, relax and let your children do things to help and do not expect it to be done to the perfection you yourself would do it.
My children live a different more relaxed lifestyle than I do/did but I have learned several things from them. I too was always particular about the house, had to be spotless, etc. Now I see my kids living a much more relaxed life, more time to spend with children, doing things together, etc. than I did when they were home and spending all my time taking care of the "house" instead of taking time to "really" play or do things with my kids (not just keep them busy in extra activities). Times have changed and you need to relax more regarding "the house" and enjoy life with your family and grandma. I too got frustrated when caring for my m-i-l and spots were on the floor or messes.
If you do not relax and worry less about "things" you will end up losing your health the same as I did as a result of caring for my m-i-l.
You are frustrated about things now and your grandmother is frustrated about her life changing. Please understand how your grandmother is having a frustrating time, most likely resenting not having her own place and say about everything. We all would feel this way. It is hard to make big changes later in life after being independent and living the way we wanted to do with complete independence.
It would be great to find a friend for grandma, this would give her a friend and not depend on you and your family for all her social needs. I found an elderly lady to visit my m-i-l once a week, I served lunch and they visited. Made a big difference in my m-i-l, she had a friend of her own.
I personally grew up without "things" and when we finally acquired a nice house and furnishings I wanted it to stay new looking. What is life if you have nice things but can't use them for fear you are ruining them. Can't take things to our grave, why leave things in prestine condition to be tossed out for junk or sold by our kids in a garage sale for a few pennies. Use what you have, take care of it but still use it, worry less and enjoy life.
These days I am using the good china, silverware, new towels, etc. and do not plan on leaving stuff for someone else to enjoy when I am gone from this life, why should the joy of using them pass me by and then end up in a garage sale for a pitance of a price? Our kids are all gone, families of their own and our house is still in great shape after all those years of a large family.
Don't worry about the food your grandmother hides. She grew up during the depression days where there was little one could afford, many times little to eat. She needs space to keep some food items just for her, in a place that others do not nibble away and will be there when she wants it even if it does spoil before she gets around to it. I have a problem now, being diabetic I like to have some good tasting food around to enjoy when my sugar count will allow me to, but, my husband thinks it must be eaten before it spoils. Keep telling him "hands off" and so what if it spoils, at least when I can have it it is there for me. Many times I have wanted a piece of fruit, or something else only to find he has consumed all of it. You might want to consider a small refrigerator like college students have that will fit under a desk or in small area where grandma can stash her goodies and not necessary to hide in the kitchen frig.
Hang in there, lighten up and stay away from pills. Taking another look at your situation I know you will see where changes can be made for a more pleasant atmosphere for all of you.
You are oh so right in alot that you said. I think I'm just overwelmed at the moment and I'm sure it will go away in a couple of days. I do encourage her to do things around the house, but she refuses. Can you imagine the day I came downstairs and the dishes were done (LOL) I about had aheart attack (LOL) She has come along way since December. I know she was really sick when she got here, but right up until she came to be with us she cooked,cleaned (as best as she knew how),and did everything for her and grandpa. Now dont get me wrong at 74 she deserves a break. I have a glass top stove and for the life of me I cant get her to use it. She will just say thats new technology and I'll never learn how to use it. I tell her all she has to do is turn the eye on like any other stove but she wont even try. She had never used a dishwasher in her life, but has learned to use the one we have. She is trying and I choose to do her laundry because I all ready have a ton of it and with a whirlpool duet she would really never learn (lol). As far as the kids they have chores like their bedrooms and their bath and the trash and feeding their animals. Believe me their rooms of bathroom is never the way I like it, but I dont say anything. It's upstairs so I just shut their doors LOL. I'm hoping by taking her to bingo she will meet some friends as she didn't have no friends where she lived before only grandpa and a lady who came once a week to clean for the elderly. She has called her, but she is only about 38 or 39 and is married and works so I think she was really nice to grandma and talked to her while she cleaned, but I dont think she really wants to drive over to just visit and not get paid for it. About a mile down the road are quite a few old people so as soon as the weather gets nice she can ride her scooter out the road and maybe visit as they work in their yards and maybe meet someone. Dont worry from our house to where they live is a gravel road and there are no houses in between. No risk of getting hit by a car. Dont get me wrong I dont say alot and if her or the kids do something for me even if it's not up to my standards I dont go behind them and redo it I tell them how much I appreciate the help. Then the next day when no one is looking I redo it (LOL). I keep almost everything inside and only tell you all what I'm really feeling as I feel I have to have someone to talk to. I know on here if I do say something wrong it is not hurting my families feelings. As far as her hiding food well I wouldn't care so much, but now my kids are doing the same thing (LOL) I find soda's in cracker boxes and poptarts behind the plastic in the pancake box and I have even found twinkies in the flour (LOL). I can correct my older ones, but I think I'm going to have a problem with my 4 year old. I know she grew up in the depression and believe me her father died when she was 12 so I know her and my great grandma had a really touch time. I guess it also makes me upset because before she came to stay with me I spent about $200.00 every two weeks with only having to get milk and bread between grocery shoppings. She is a diabetic, so I buy alot of extras that she likes including alot of sugar free items. I use to not cook three meals a day as the kids ate in school and then we would have a good dinner. Now I cook three meals a day and because her sugar isn't really that bad the Dr. said let her have what she wants and give her humalog according to what her suger is. She now takes a pill in the morning and a shot if say she wants apple pie. At her age me and him agreed her quality of life is more important then quantity. She has severe COPD so she doesn't have but a few more years here on earth. So it's not like I want her to do alot around the house, but like you said I know if she can just do little things it will make her feel more independant and like it is really her home. As far as the furniture well at being only 35 years old I had planned on it looking nice until at least we were old, but at the same time it is something that can be replaced if we have to. Thats why I bought the best money could buy in hopes I would never have to replace it. I can tell you this after reading several of your posts I remembered something the Lord can giveth and the Lord can taketh. I should of learned my lesson on this years ago. I had a car that I cared more about then anything and one day I guess God said it's a wake up call cause the car was wrecked and destroyed. So you know what my new attitude is it's only furniture and material things and they can be replaced. Thank all of you so much because this is the best I have felt in days right now at this moment in time. Sometimes I think I just need a reality check of whats right and whats wrong. Three months ago I was thinking the same way you all have told me I should think, but I guess after being let down by family with broken promises to help me (taking her to Dr's appt. getting her meds, coming every weekend to give me a break, my mom comes some, but all four of the other kids was suppose to take turns, etc...) and my husband going to nightshift and then taking on a second job and my kids starting up in sports again along with taking care of grandma I was just so overwhelmed I couldn't take time for myself let alone time to think with my heart. I don't have any Valium or a would of took them, but glad I don't have and that I didn't it's better to just think things out with the help of you all. Lots of hugs LMG
Oh, how I can relate to learning how to use new gadgets!! As we age we become intimidated by new things. We can overcome some things and others it is just best to leave them alone and be happy. Our minds slow down, thinking things thru that are complicated to us takes longer and sometimes just not worth the trouble. Our kids live in the today high tech society and breeze thru things with their younger minds, us oldes coast along and pick up a little here and there. Our kids are in their 30's-40's.
It was hard to understand why my mother could not crochet like she did in the past, especially using patterns she used before. She became frustrated when trying to crochet and finally stopped. My m-i-l became that way too. Well, I got a taste of what they were going thru recently. I am crocheting tablecloths for each of our children. The pattern chosen by our son/wife was too hard for me to figure out. Tried a few patterns and after wanting to shake and get away from that frustrated feeling I crocheted a sample of a simple pattern I had made before, they liked it and that is what I am using for their tablecloth. I just could not figure out the patterns like in years past.
My parents got dish tv but the controls were too complicated for my mother to learn. TV was never used unless one of us kids were there. Even writing down 1, 2, 3 instructions it was too complicated. I also have a problem with 3 tv controls because DH hogs the controls and I never use them. So, when I want to use them I have no clue which button on which control needs to be pushed, my mind does not retain that without practice.
Yeah, we do keep a lot inside, but, that is not good for us. We need to flow with the punches of life, not fret over little things. It is easy to say these things but not easy to practice them myself.
Continue to come here and vent, you need to vent, and true ,what you unload hear will not hurt your family. Every one needs a place to vent, even go down to a creek and bawl your eyes out, I did that more than once.
Sounds like your grandmother is recovering very well to have had a heart attack in Dec. It takes time for an older body to recover, at least a year to get back to anything considered normal. Heart attacks sometimes leaves a person unable to fully recover. Strength and stamina is hard to build back up.
Something you need to keep watch on is her potassium level. Too little potassium and they become weak and not feel good, too much potassium can do harm.
If potassium is 3 or higher it is o.k., 4 to 5 is better, but, below 3 is too low. If it gets down to 2 it is way too low. Do not give potassium to her unless the doctor prescribes it. Some doctors believe in giving potassium and others do not. I had a running battle with my m-i-l's doctor, he did not believe in giving potassium but doctors here did and it bailed her out many times.
Yes, buying special foods for a diabetic is expensive and you should use your grandmother's money for this purpose. My grocery bill has increased big time since I became diabetic.
Eating lower carb foods will help keep her blood sugar controlled. I control via diet/exercise and at times I have to walk treadmill until my legs feel like they cannot take another step in order to get blood sugar back down.
Your grandmother is not "OLD", she is still a spring chicken and deserves proper care, even with her diabetes. Yeah, I thought 70 was old when I was in my 30's but now it does not seem old at all. I may have another 30 years to live if I take care of myself!!
Hang in there, you will come to a happy medium to keep your own sanity and your family be able to live a comfy life. Remember, you only have 1 head, 2 hands, 2 feet and there is only so much you can do in any 24 hr. time frame. Be sure and split up that time frame into increments so there is time for yourself, time for your children, time for your grandmother, and time for your husband without being exhausted when it comes to your husband's turn for your attention!!
I am wondering if there is a way to tap into some elder care organizations. In our state there are alot of organizations (paid and volunteer) that offer things like elder sitting, etc....Maybe that is an option...just getting a few hours off, a few times a week, gives you a sense that a break is just around the corner...It is too bad the extended family doesn't offer assist as they could also volunteer a couple of hours a couple of times a week or one day a week or something...it is very hard on one family/one household to be sole care providers...I can't imagine anyone doing it by themsleves (like a spouse solely taking care of a spouse)...I think you should ask family to help as this might get more overwhelming if your Grandma has increasing problems...mentally and/or physically...Best wishes...and hope your family comes around...You may want to look into a mood leveling drug...it doesn't sound like any of these issues you have to deal with are good for your mental well being...
Don't think I could deal with a bunch of folks worrying me about $5.00 when you consider costs of caring- both in time and money...
I really had to take the time to help her realize that the dust on the china hutch was less important that the fact that people just love coming to our house. TOok me about a year but it was well worth it.
The point is, that eventually Grandma's going to pass on, and I don't think you want to remember this wonderful opportunity you could be having, and instead remember the spots on the rug, and the smudges on the chair.
Good luck and stay away from the valium. Take a quiet walk in the park...if you can manage the time. Chris
Perfectionist and control freak are the key words here. At some point people just have to let go. I was like that, a control freak. It drove me to be very nervous and unable to enjoy company. Everything had to be just so. I was a nervous person to be around while in that state of mind; people weren't comfortable in my house anymore. One day I learned of a group called Co-dependents anonymous, a 12 step program. From it I learned not to sweat the small stuff and that most of our stuff IS small stuff.
I like living in a clean a pleasant environment but it can't always be like that and I've learned that it's okay. I WISH I lived in a beautiful home but I don't. I care for a physically disabled spouse going on 24 years. Talk about running myself ragged trying to keep house and him clean! I had to let some of that go because it was driving me insane. Today, I'm a disabled person who needs the help of others to take care of those things I was always on top of. They don't do things the way I'd do them myself but I'm sooo grateful anyone at all is helping me.
I would suggest to the woman caring for her beloved granny to just "give the room to her". Let her decide what she wants in it. Throw down a cheap overlay carpet that's cleanable. Purchase some second hand furniture and use slip covers for washing/cleaning up. The walls can be spackled and painted over at any time, not to mention the room will be unoccupied when granny passes on and all repairs can be made at that time. Put a door up at grannies room and let her have some privacy. If she likes silk flowers, let her have them. If she spills something let her have some paper towels nearby to blot it up. I hope she has a TV or radio to entertain herself. Her room can be cleaned out at scheduled times but not every hour. Put bins in her room for laundry and/or trash...none of it has to be of top notch quality-- only functional for the task. The door to her room can be closed when company comes if that suits the purpose of the care giver. Heck, I do that with my sloppy grandson. I go in to do a spot check and clean out whatever is really nasty but his space is his space. If he wants to live like a slob I just tell guests that this is his room and I had nothing to do with it. He is the cleaner or the slob either way. (evil grin)
Give yourself a break, you can't do it all. People get old and they become disabled; they cannot help doing many of the things they do. Set down the heavy baggage of perfectionism and LET IT GO. A person is much freer that way. It's a blessing in disguise. Enjoy granny as long as you have her OR let her go stay with the other family members....
How about this one--give Grandma a job--the job of writing down the family history, documenting the highs and lows of your ancestors, their immigration to the country. Let her get lost in her memories by giving them and her a purpose in her later years. Let your children help her by doing gopher stuff--like getting photographs blown up for a scrap book, or typing up each section of her memoirs. It sounds like Grandma is being treated like a piece of the furniture, something that sits around, needs to be taken care of occasionally, but doesn't have an intrinsic purpose in your family. And that probably is because you've taken the entire burden upon yourself to integrate her into your home with your husband and your children, all of whom probably look to you for guidance with even the smallest details. Surely Grandma used to have her expertise in something--she needs to feel in control of her own life, by either putting that expertise to use for the family, or teaching it to someone who cares. If she is so nervous about her things, is it because she doesn't have any privacy of her own? That could be sending a message that she is only a temporary member of the family, who everybody else is merely putting up with for the time being. Do your children spend any quality time with her, or are they too wrapped up in their own lives to pay her any attention? Perhaps there is some way that they could find her magical, as I'm sure you once felt about her yourself when you were young.....Any help?