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The Case of the Missing Key

November 17th, 2015 at 06:16 am

When your loved one has dementia, you really have to laugh at this stuff. Because there's not usually much humor to be found. But this did bring a smile to my heart.

After my mother's hip fracture, when I decided to move my mother out of the tony Maplewood and into Masonicare, which has an attached rehab and skilled nursing facility on site, I reread the many documents I'd signed in a daze upon admission to Maplewood. Among the clauses that caught my eye was the pronouncement that you'd be charged $250 each for any lost room keys.

I returned my key but I could not find my mother's. She always wore it on a little plastic spiral wristlet thing.

I suppose finding it...or not...is inconsequential at this point since all my mother's assets will be sucked up by Masonicare and then the state will pick up most of her expenses.

Still, I worried about where that key was and I did NOT want to pay an outrageous "lost key" fee. I personally packed up everything in my mother's room at Maplewood and could not find it in her dresser drawers, her handbag, the closet, etc.

As I set most of the same stuff back up in her new space at Masonicare assisted living, I hoped to uncover it, but did not. After her 3 days there and the 2 week stint at Masonicare's geriatric psychiatric hospital unit, I packed up her stuff yet again, bringing it from Masonicare assisted living to my home because at that point I knew she had to go into the nursing home.

I haven't made much progress sorting through stuff because I've been swamped with paperwork for her admission to nursing home, healthcare matters, financial matters and of course my f/t job.

Still, I was determined to find the damn key. At one point I found an unusually large key and although it wasn't on Maplewood's trademark wristlet, I thought my mother could have managed to remove it from the wristlet and that this might be it. So I eagerly stopped over at Maplewood with my dad, but no, they told me that wasn't their key.

I inquired at the front desk there whether one of their nurses removed it from my mother's wrist when she was brought to the hospital Labor Day weekend. the front desk sent out an email, got no response, then someone said we don't know, we have to look into it and I never heard from them again. (So typical.)

I basically gave up on ever finding the room key and I figured it would be futile to call the hospital about it.

Lo and behold, I found the key this morning. It was in the bottom of an opened box of Equate pantiliners. If I weren't so frugal, I could have easily tossed that box and never found it. Or, since it was opened, it could have easily fallen out and dropped who knows where.

There is a sad memory associated with those pantiliners. I remember when I first moved my mother to Maplewood, pre-hip fracture, when she was urgently asking me to get her some pantiliners. I didn't even know she used them although the funny thing is, i use them daily and I guess she did too. (Sorry, TMI?) Anyway, these were the pantiliners I'd bought her. I remember a few months later I thought she might be running low so I brought over another box and sadly, she did not seem to know what they were for. That's how quickly you can lose your mind.

Anyway, I've already alerted the business manager over there so i don't get charged any "missing key" fee.

5 Responses to “The Case of the Missing Key”

  1. CB in the City Says:

    Glad you found that key! Funny how they seem to move around. I used to have an extra key for my car which I gave up for lost long ago and even forgot about. But when my car was painted, the techs found it in my car somewhere! I can't imagine where, because I do clean out my car regularly!

  2. creditcardfree Says:

    Yea! Glad you found the key. Thanks for the heads up on the Amex Amazon offer. I have added it to our cards. I know there is shopping to be done there!

  3. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    great job on finding the key. $250 is a lot of money. And the amex offers I want it.

  4. VS_ozgirl Says:

    It is so sad how quickly you can lose your mind.. I have been dealing with my husband on this one because it seems that everyone in his family doesn't want to deal with his mother's dementia and help out the father, who is also old. His mind is fine but he has become increasingly grumpy which is a sign that he has too much on his plate..

  5. frugaltexan75 Says:

    Glad you found the key!

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