Message from the President
Greetings friend, and welcome to the October Comfort Connection!
My mom will be 89 this January. She still has a driver’s licence and is still driving her car. But that might be changing.
In the past 12 months, she has had 2 at-fault accidents, and 2 other accidents with her car that were not her fault. This last accident was a doozy. She was northbound on Pembina Highway and turned left across 3 lanes of traffic. She misjudged the speed of the car coming south on Pembina towards her and got T-boned on the rear passenger door in the curb lane. The impact was so great, her car got bounced right up on the boulevard.
Although my mom has no visible cuts and bruises, she was panicked by the accident. She was shaky, her heart was beating out of her chest, and she couldn’t think straight. She also sustained a severe concussion.
Her car is written off. She is visibly shaken by this accident.
Everything in me is screaming, "MOM, STOP DRIVING!!! I love you too much for me to let you drive ever again!!!!" But this is a delicate matter. It involves another adult’s decision, not just mine!
I remember having to talk her out of driving to Saskatchewan to visit her son even after her last trip was a complete disaster. She got lost more than once and a "nice man" helped her on the way! She said, "You know, I only saved 3 hours by flying!"
As a daughter, what is my responsibility? I care about my mom. How do I support her and guide her in the right direction while keeping her dignity intact? I emailed my 4 siblings. The consensus is if we can get her to make the decision not to drive herself, she will feel much better about not driving.
To her credit, my mom has limited her driving of her own volition. She doesn’t drive at night. She won’t drive downtown. She won’t park downtown. She only drives familiar routes. She gets rides with friends often to help limit the amount of driving she does.
Although I take pride in my persuasive skills, obviously my mother is immune to my ability to convince. She wouldn’t have any of what I had to say. She will continue to keep her independence, even if... (I pray nothing untoward will happen.)
If nothing else, I’ve learned a great deal about how MPI works. A concerned individual can submit a person’s name to the MPI Medical Compliance and Assessments Department. They will assess an individual’s fitness to drive. However, they are quite backed up. MPI also offers a 3-hour Mature Driver Workshop
, and although it's not mandatory, I’m pretty sure I can convince my mom to attend. After all, she will be able to drive herself there!
Bless you as you too may be a caregiver to an older parent or loved one!
President & CEO
Comforts of Home – Care