I have been hospitalized two times since September. Nothing life-threatening thank goodness and I seem to be on the mend and counting my blessings daily.
During each hospital stay, there was the obvious frustration of simply being sick, in the hospital and not knowing what was wrong. For me personally even greater than the physical issues, was the angst of millions of thoughts going through my mind: What did that doctor just say to me?? (as he sprinted in and out of the room as if he had a bus to catch). I am in extreme distress and it was hard to process what he was telling me about my situation. I have to call my daughter to bring me my clothing and take care of the dog. Will her employer be ok with her having to leave work?? (My 24 year old daughter does not live with me and has demands and responsibilities of her own); What if this illness is serious?? What if they cannot find out what is causing this problem?? What am I going to do about my job? Will I be able to work? I live alone – how am I going to care for myself until my health improves?? WILL my health improve?? The conversations in my head and real fear in my spirit went on and on.
Many of us are professionals who are committed to the care and quality of life for our frail and elderly and we have all likely done the “senior sensitivity training” which is invaluable to better understand the challenges of aging. What I was not prepared for were the real-life challenges and responses from others as a result of those challenges which I had to face. For the first time I really noticed the impatience as I drove a little slower or had difficulty navigating through a grocery store with a cane.
I was also very aware of being dependent on those around me for even the simplest things and also my self-imposed but very real shame and humiliation for having to ask for assistance with those tasks, feeling like a child at times. After all, in my private and professional life, I was the one providing the assistance and not the one needing it.
There is now a new and special level of support I can provide our clients because I feel I truly have walked a mile in their shoes.
Be Well and Happy New Year
Gloria Ego PG, C.S.A., is a Certified Senior Advisor and Professional Guardian. To contact Gloria, email to: Gloria@florida-elderlaw.com.
To learn more about the Elder Care services that we provide under the Elder Law Umbrella, call The Law Offices of Alice Reiter Feld and Associates at 954.726.6602 or visit http://www.florida-elderlaw.com