Value of having caregivers

October 26, 2008 by  
Filed under Articles, News

I have spent my life always being the one to step in and be the caregiver when one was needed. For the last 6 weeks, I had to be the cared for. I need help because I had rotator cuff surgery and was unable to care for myself and my 4 dogs. First, my elderly parents came to help. They took me to the hospital for my outpatient surgery and then forgot me for 2 hours. They misunderstood the nurse’s call that I was ready. Worrying that they may have gotten into an accident made the pain medications and surgery fuzziness go away. My parents were kind, caring, and really helped as much as they could. But, I never slept during the day even the first few days after the surgery because I had to worry that the dogs did not trip them, that they could walk far enough and get into their motorhome. They stayed a week and I appreciated that they cared enough to help and I felt like it made them feel better in that we do not always get along. Then my son flew in. He had just recovered from a collapsed lung. He does not cook or do yard work. I have almost .23 of an acre. So I would sneak out and clean the dog poop one armed. He was great about making sure I did my exercises and kept the ice on. He took great care of the dogs and I loved talking politics with him. He stayed 3 weeks. Then, one of my former students came and stayed for 5 days until the doctor said I could start PT and get out of the sling. I had people around for 5 days. I felt helpless but lucky to have people I could trust and cared. I still can’t do much for myself but I am thankful that I had people to care for me so that the chances of my arm recuperating completely are great. What bothers me is that many people don’t have people to rely on for 5 weeks, even 1 week. My thoughts go to not people like me who just had a surgery and did not have a chronic or life threatening condition, but to all of those people who don’t have good assistance in their time of need. It makes me think that with all of the baby boomers aging that insurance companies should setup policies or cover more caregiving options. If I had not had help, it would be almost a given that I would retear and need surgery again and my insurance probably would not cover it. What are your ideas for getting assistance through insurance for caregivers?

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