Warning: Illegal string offset 'sidebar_change' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 4

Warning: Illegal string offset 'sb_primary' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 5

Warning: Illegal string offset 'sb_secondary' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 6

Warning: Illegal string offset 'sidebar_swap' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 7

Warning: Illegal string offset 'sl_pos' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 9

Warning: Illegal string offset 'primary_width' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 10

Warning: Illegal string offset 'secondary_width' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 11

Warning: Illegal string offset 'special_width' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 12

Warning: Illegal string offset 'back_change' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 15

Warning: Illegal string offset 'background_color' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 16

Warning: Illegal string offset 'background_url' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 17

Warning: Illegal string offset 'background_repeat' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 18

Warning: Illegal string offset 'header_change' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 19

Warning: Illegal string offset 'header2_change' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 20

Warning: Illegal string offset 'header_url' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 21

Warning: Illegal string offset 'header_position' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 22

Warning: Illegal string offset 'header_position2' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 23

Warning: Illegal string offset 'header_url2' in /home2/melindas/public_html/wp-content/themes/ms7/includes/tt_meta.php on line 24

Life Worries

I’ve been musing on family over the past week because of the sudden illness of an old friend.  As many of us tend to do he assumed it was a really bad cold or the flu.  Finally he got a friend to take him to the hospital where they discovered no less than three life threatening illnesses. 

Any one of them would have been detected with a simple checkup, but he has no insurance, money is at a premium and he couldn’t pay the doctor’s bill so he didn’t go.  He could have found a free clinic for a checkup, but I’m sure he didn’t think of himself as someone in that category.  But I won’t go wandering off into my fury over our terrible, broken health care system.

What’s of more interest and concern to me is the fear this has aroused in me.  My friend is an only child, and both parents are deceased.  His marriage ended, and now he finds himself alone.  I am in the exact same situation. 

What we both have is good friends, but our friends tend to be of our generation, and we’re getting older.  How many times can friends come to the rescue of each other?  Cities are large, people lose touch with one another.  If you are only seeing someone at the occasional social gathering no one will know if they are in desperate trouble.  You just didn’t show up for the latests movie outing, or autographing, or whatever.  You could end up dying alone and afraid.

Social workers or home health care workers can come and check on you, but they are severely overworked, and with budget cuts there just aren’t enough to go around for aging Baby Boomers.  If you have money you can buy that kind of help, but that requires a lot of money, and all the tales of elder abuse makes me shiver.

For me, personally, this experience has made me realize how much I want a partner.  Someone to drive me to the hospital if I’m really sick, hold my hand while I go through tests and procedures, to be there as I’m dying.  Someone to scatter my ashes, and remember me to our friends.

I may not have that, but I do have a community.  It’s called science fiction, and if anyone out there is wondering where they can find kindness and generosity just join your local S.F. club.  What we have had in this crises is a community of people whose generosity and kindness has left me breathless.  They have rallied to offer their labor, their money and their emotional support so our friend can return home, and they will be there to check on him.

And now the practical former lawyer has to put a postscript on this emotional maundering.  Please, please, please — get a will drafted.  You can download simple forms off the internet.  Please, please, please grant a durable Power of Attorney so you have someone to pay your bills while you in the hospital, and be able to talk to the doctors on your behalf.  And please, please, please get a durable health care Power of Attorney including individual health care instructions ie a Living Will.  No it’s not a bullshit “death panel” (may f***ing Sarah Palin rot in hell for that piece of idiocy and fear mongering.)  It will mean that your loved ones can make you passing easier, and care for you in your final illness, and see to it that _your wishes are respected_.

And now I’m going to go away and do some work.  I apologize for this.  I always vowed I wouldn’t plaster my emotions on this blog, but this week has been so very hard, and I’m so very sad and afraid.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

Appearances
Social Media
Friend me on FacebookFollow me on Twitter