Joyce was somber and sad this morning when I stopped by to take her some breakfast. I had carefully prepared a plate of warm Danishes, fruits, and buttery toast.
"My sister is selling my house," she said sitting in her kitchen as she started to cry. "They are putting me in assisted living."
I didn't know what to say, but a feeling of anger welled up within me. I swallowed my anger and just sat with her at the table holding her hand.
"Certainly there is something you can do?" I asked.
"She has power of attorney over me," Joyce replied between sniffles.
Selfishly, I thought of my own circumstances. That of being a mentally ill man in recovery and also having my father with power of attorney. I wouldn't know what to do either. Mental illness can rob you of your independence and adulthood. You are relegated to the rights of a child.
"I love you," I told her as I hugged her. "Eat your breakfast and you will feel better."
I left Joyce sitting at that table and somewhat more composed. Joyce is only 62 and much too young for the old folk's home. She still isn't doing well, though. Who knows? She might like assisted living once she settles in. I can only hope for the best.