Grandma has been pretty vocal about not wanting me to make things easier on her. I can see the wisdom in that. She knows that the less she does the less she will be able to do. But, the fact is that she is 101 years old. Her mobility is decreasing. She’s having a tougher time getting up and down because of her knees, and her recent cold made her weakness that much more acute.
Yesterday I purchased this spaceship-looking raised toilet seat (it even has handles!) and installed it while she was napping. I didn’t mention it, opting instead to let her discover it on her own. I know Grandma well enough to know that she won’t say anything directly. She’ll wait a few days to tell me that she doesn’t want me helping her.
Sure enough, as soon as I had the handles locked in place I heard Grandma rise from her nap. She shuffled and hummed her way from the couch (which I also need to raise by a few inches) to the bathroom. I heard her humming abruptly stop when she noticed the new addition to the bathroom.
Then…she proceeded to do her business, and was out of the bathroom again in record time. No struggling to get up, no fear of falling. At some point I’ll bring up the new toilet seat, just to see how she reacts, but for now I’m happy to know that I’ve eased her way a bit.
Sometimes, you’ve got to do something that you know goes against your elders’ wishes if you see that the benefit outweighs any possible fallout. For me, the reward is instantaneous. She’s retaining her independence (and dignity) and I’ve gained peace of mind. I’ll take a “win” when I can get it.