Thoughts On Being On the Other Side of the Help Desk

Good evening CAMPBELLSWORLD VISITORS!!! Here is hoping this evening finds you doing superb! Fabulous! The best ever in your life! All in all I’d have to say I’m doing pretty OK that is if you don’t count the fact that I dribble when I cough or sneeze, can remember what I wore to my first day of seventh grade, but couldn’t tell you where the hell I put my jacket and shoes on any given day of the week. Get tired after doing nothing more than walking the dog a half mile, washing a load of clothes, and doing a sink of dishes. Just one trip to the grocery store and home is a true chore some days, and as if that weren’t enough, now I find myself needing to downsize for not only financial reasons but because maintaining this big old house just for me and Campbell seems like more work than it’s worth these days. So, here I am working with case managers, social workers, and high rise elderly and disAbled apartment complex managers. Basically, I have become the kind of person I used to help.

You see, not so long ago, when I was not so seemingly old you know, I used to coordinate 40 to 50 people a month, make sure 120 phone shifts per month were filled, and whatever else came along that I could do to Leo that fine I&R hotline run as smoothly as possible. What kind of work did we do? Information and referral for folks in need. Folks like me. Folks who for various reasons can no longer work, or have more month than they have money, or a combo of both.

Imagine my horrified surprise when I woke up one morning and realized I had turned into the one needing help rather than playing the roll of the one giving it? Imagine how I felt calling the organization for which I used to work to get phone numbers for places that could assist with my need, and imagine how it feels to know who and what I was, who and what I am, and who and what I’ll never be again? It is a rough feeling to be sure. While I know many great things are still in store for me and my faithful guide for many years to come, there are times when I feel old, slow, and used up. Just today I had a hard time getting back to my feet after squatting to pick up Campbell’s leavings. Seems like just yesterday I was laughing at my elders for saying, “My! How time does fly!” Only to hear myself saying it now and not needing to see to know the youngsters in my life are rolling their eyes, and laughing behind their hands at me as I say things like that, to know tha they are. As King Campbell says in the Bubba Tails series, “Go ahead and laugh wee ones. It will happen to you. Of that you can be sure.”

I’m sure that one day I’ll get used to the younger ones offering to carry bags, open doors, and offer to take my groceries into the house. For now, I’m only 49 years old, and even though due to mistreatment over the years, my body is a few years ahead of my biological clock, I want to keep on doing as much for me as I am able.

That is why, as soon as an apartment comes available for us, Campbell and I will be moving from our three bed room home of six years, into a one bed room efficiency apartment. It will be a life changing experience, but it is my hope that with some sacrifice will come gain. I am hopeful that with the money I save that I will be able to afford for Campbell and I to participate in some of the awesome and inexpensive activities going on about town. Maybe spend a bit of money on furthering my writing, or possibly saving for a trip. Who knows? We might want to attend a convention over the summer vacation season.

Whatever we do all of these changes will take time to adjust to, and I hope you will come along and go with Campbell and me and see what it is that we do see.

You know? Just figured it out. Both Campbell and I are 49 years old. I guess it might be time to slow down just a tad, but don’t count us out. For now, this is Patty and Campbell saying…
May harmony find you, age is just a number, and blessid be.

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This entry was posted in Aging, disAbility, Human Services, Independent Living Services, Adult Services, I&R, Help Desk, Helpline, Hotline, Social Worker, Case Manager, Human Resources, Aids, Life, Changes, House, Housing, Autumn, Book blog magazine, Bubba Tails From the Puppy Nursery At The Seeing Eye, Dog Guide, Friendship Everlasting Faithfulness, Campbell's Rambles: How a Seeing Eye Dog Retrieved My Life, Cohabitation, Concerns, Mobility, O&M, Instruction, Supportive Services, Fears, Needs, Disorientation, Confusion, Overwhelmed, Over Loaded, Adjustment,Arrangements, Hope, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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