Do you ever look into the future and wonder who is really in your corner? Is it your spouse, your kids, your friends? Let’s get past TRUST. Let’s just say you have a team. These are the folks you would bet your life they have your back.
Hmmm. How many friends have a key to your home, just in case you need them to check on something? Perhaps you need them to check on you?
I ask these questions because of a recent experience. Recently, we had two family members in different states that had significant life-threatening issues. One has an adult dependent living in the house, and another has no one.
Scenario one, The Fall.
This 90 plus year-old lives alone in an apartment complex, does not drive and uses a flip phone. You can’t get an UBER on a flip phone. You can’t get a Life Alert type of app on a flip phone. You can’t attach a smartwatch with a Fall Monitor to a flip phone. You get where I’m going. She is 100% dependent on luck. She would have been lucky after her last fall if she made a LOUD noise so a neighbor could have possibly heard and come to help. It didn’t. Her neighbor found her a couple of days after she didn’t answer her phone — on the floor, passed out. She was dehydrated, and not coherent. The good news is, she was lucky; her neighbor found her, got her to the hospital via ambulance, and after a month, she is back home from rehab and back to her routine. But now she has a Fall Monitor, so help is automatically called if she plops over, whether she is responsive or not, help is on its way!
Scenario two, The Flu.
This 80 plus year-old lives with his child of 50 plus years. She does not work, she is his dependent. He cooks, he cleans, he drives, he pays for and takes care of everything. He promised his late wife he would honor her request to care for their daughter, and he is.
He was stricken with the flu. A terrible case that escalated to pneumonia. The dependent daughter did not know what to do. So, she allowed him to rest and try and shake the cold. As the virus worsened, he became less and less responsive. His other daughter hopped on a plane and flew across the country. She arrived to find her dad in a soiled bed, and hardly able to respond. Off to the hospital. Its been over a month and this guy still needs help getting out of bed and performing simple activities of daily living.
Here is my point. You gotta know who is in your corner. Some folks are physically present but may not have the ability to act. Sometimes you may need physical help, other times you may need help with cognitive things, like making decisions. Who knows? I’m just suggesting that you make sure you have a TEAM in place when you need them most.