Joanne had been my client for many years when she let me know that many family members were going to come to Connecticut for a summer visit and they wanted her to join them in their vacation stay. They asked her to have me call the niece who was organizing the trip to share information with her about the best places for Joanne to be included in their visit.
When I spoke with her niece, Rebecca, I was excited to hear that they wanted Joanne to be included in the entire two-week vacation. This included planning where they would stay, activities she could join in on, tourist stops that would accommodate her needs, and anything else that I could help them plan to include her. The best part was they would all be here when it was her birthday and they wanted help to plan a special birthday party for her.
Since Joanne used a wheelchair and scooter as mobility aids, we would need to find places that would accommodate her easily. Additionally, Joanne did have some daily care assistance that she needed and in discussion it was agreed that one of the home care aides that already knew her and assisted in her care would be best to accompany her. I spoke with the home care agency and the aide, and it worked for her to join Joanne for this trip. This took a lot of the concern out of the puzzle because someone that knew Joanne’s daily needs and care would be with her for the entire two weeks.
Rebecca shared her basic itinerary ideas, and I gave her feedback about how Joanne would be able to get around, what options would be needed to help her enjoy her stay, and I made notes to start helping schedule the assistive options needed. They were staying at a rental home as a home base and enjoying outings from there so we made sure that the rental home had a wheelchair ramp and that there was a suitable bedroom and bathroom on the first floor that would be for Joanne and this house was perfect as there was a bedroom that shared the bathroom for her aide to stay in. The rental home was at a beach, so I also made sure that we had a beach style wheelchair available at the home for her.
We worked out the plans and Rebecca made the reservations. For the birthday party, they rented out a whole room of a local seafood restaurant. This was going to be a highlight for Joanne as she loved fresh seafood and the treat of having her family there would make it extra special. I talked with the aide, and we made sure that the right clothing was packed for Joanne, including a nice dress and shoes for her special dinner. They were going to tell her that it was a nice dinner just not that they remembered it was her birthday and would have a decorated banquet room as a surprise.
It took a lot of work to make sure that Joanne would be comfortable, but we all knew that this would be an amazing stay for Joanne and the time with her family would be very special to her. I was so happy to receive the photos throughout their trip and I checked in every few days to make sure that it was all going well. Joanne had the time of her life and was included in all the activities. She felt so loved and said that it was the best birthday she had ever had, even better than when her dad gave her a pony for her 10th birthday which was saying a lot.
As care managers, much of our work is based on medical care and what can be difficult daily care for aging people. This type of trip planning was so special and fulfilling, knowing that we were giving our client the chance to take a break from the constant concern of daily care.
We would be happy to help your family discuss solutions to aging care challenges and even to plan a trip if you want to come and take your elderly loved one along with you. Reach out to us today at (203) 258-2640 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to help with any needs you have.