By Brenda Deschner, Certified Concierge Care Advisor
More often than not, as a Senior Care Advisor I am helping someone move in an emergency situation. They move in, the family says thank you, and aside from a post 3 and 30 day check-in, we are no longer in contact unless they need additional resources.
Every now and then I work with a family for months, sometimes even a year or more. I worked with a family where the husband and wife were both in rehabilitation when I met them. We toured Assisted Living Communities and drew close to discharging from rehab and moving into their new home.
In February we had “Snowmageddon” and on this day, the husband was rushed to the hospital. His intestines had ruptured and he was septic. He was put on life support. His lovely wife of 56 years came from rehab to visit him and she suffered a heart attack while there.
The husband unfortunately passed away. The family was devastated and the wife had to find a reason to continue to fight for her life when she just lost the love of hers.
I visited her at least 3 times a week at the hospital and then while she was at rehab. She fought, she was able to walk, and we found her an Assisted Living Community. She was excited, she bought all new furniture and was going to take on the aging journey alone and do it well.
I learned so much about her. What her favorite flowers were, her adventures traveling across the country in an RV with her beloved husband, what her favorite beer is, even though her cousin had no idea she drank beer. We bonded and she became my new friend.
A few weeks later I was at the hospital visiting clients when I saw her son in the hall crying. I immediately knew something was awry. He ran over to me and hugged me so hard! She had a terrible wound on her leg, she was septic and was being rushed into surgery.
I was able to see her a few days afterward. She wasn’t eating and one of the nurses brought her some cookies. She insisted we share them. I always got a hug and kiss when we parted ways. Little did I know that when I left that day and she said, “I Love You”, that it would be the last time I would see her or hear her sweet voice. Or so I thought.
I was very humbled and honored when I was invited to her celebration of life. It was a new experience for me and I appreciate that the family included me. I am honored to meet and help many special seniors, but this one truly became a friend and I will miss her.