You look like you just found out that Santa isn’t real, the old lady said to me from her plush, queen-sized bed.
I was only supposed to be cooking meals, helping her eat and take her medicine, not give her a sponge bath and transfer her to a toilet-chair. I didn’t have the training to be a home health aide, the job I applied for was a helper/companion.
I had been mislead and lied to. I would report the agency the next day.
I will never forget this woman, who was 93, quite frail and basically dying. Her rich son was across the country doing his thing, while she festered away with inadequate caregivers.
Imagine her anger, the fear that she must have had. She had nothing good to say about him, complaining to me while I did my best to wash her rail-thin body.
Afterward, I took her vein-ridden hand and sincerely apologized for my lack of knowledge.
It isn’t your fault, at least you care, she said. Most of these girls who come into my home are rude and treat me like dirt.
She looked away and I saw tears in her milky blue eyes.
It’s official now, my entire family is aware that my mom is not getting any better, but instead worse. My guess is that this is her last holiday season.
I’m in auto-bot mode, just doing what I can to make her life more bearable. I’ll worry about myself afterwards.
I don’t believe in Santa.
If I was able to see that 93-year-old woman again, I’d tell her that grief is the consequence of love and that the people in our lives are not infallible. We trust the wrong individuals, relationships can be broken in just 2 seconds and in the end, the only person we truly have in this lifetime is ourselves.
I would also tell her what a complete piece of shit her son is for leaving her alone with strangers like he did while she lay dying in her condo.
I’d also thank her for the experience, because I would never fucking do that to my mom. I’ll be there with her until she leaves this place for the spirit in the sky.