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We “forced” my dad to hire a helper after a fall that left him on the floor for over 14 hours. We told him it was either have a helper or go to assisted living and somehow he believed us. In truth, we couldn’t force either as he was of sound mind. We tapped into a network of older ladies, mostly former CNA’s, who enjoyed working privately. I interviewed several people before finding “the one” We couldn’t have asked for better. She made his breakfast and lunch, and prepped a dinner left in the fridge each day. She took dad on appointments and errands. She did his laundry, including most days washing bedsheets. When she wanted more to do as she didn’t like being idle, dad let the housekeeping service go and she cleaned the house. It was funny, I’d been cleaning the house for a long time, but he hated me doing it and fought me on it, I did most cleaning during his naps, but when it was the helper doing it he was thrilled. They truly became friends, she read the Bible to him daily, and they’d go out for lunch sometimes. She later told me she appreciated that I was completely honest about the needs, spelling it all out. Her only question for me during the interview was “is he mean?” Once she knew he wasn’t it went beautifully

My mom is deceased now. She died in April, but I will gladly share some experiences with you.

Mom loved looking at photos and she adored children. She was a wonderful grandmother. She loved when the caregiver from Council on Aging showed her pictures of her little girl.

Mom enjoyed sharing a cup of tea or coffee or a meal with her caregiver.

Mom loved when they asked her about her younger days. Or just the fact that they cared about spending time engaging in conversation with her. She was very stylish and loved hearing complements on her clothes.

I am most grateful to the caregivers that she had during the last month of her life in a hospice house. There are no words to accurately describe their devotion, compassion and love for my mom. I will always be grateful that these angels were in our lives.

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