To The Daily Sun,
Never in my wildest nightmares would I have expected a summer evening at a friend's barbecue to hustle me off to LRGH and Genesis Rehab for 16 days. Such would be my misfortune through a freak accident.
The good news is that in time I will recover. The bad news is that I discovered way too soon what awaits me should I live a long life and be unable to take care of myself. For 25 years I sold health insurance, including disability and long-term care — just in case my clients would suffer a disruption in their wonderful life as I did. The 'Greatest Generation' holds a different perspective on aging than we "Boomers." Up close and personal, I watched my parents manage their final months in a nursing home. Their daughter wouldn't handle her setback with nearly the quiet aplomb of her folks. Selling insurance for the "what-if's" of life is one thing; walking through the fire of complete helplessness is another.
But, there is more good news to share. Help is just around the corner and right here in our beautiful city. While I'd heard of Laconia Clinic's Doctor Miller for years, I'd never met him. He was, and is, my hero — not just with his skill as a surgeon but with his gentle bedside manner when you need it the most. The nursing staff on South 3 are amazing. They pay attention and you feel like you matter as an individual. Genesis Rehab Center is integral as the bridge for a successful home reintroduction. But, who wants to go there? Over the near two weeks I spent in their care, so many outstanding nurses, aides, PT/OT therapists watched over me. I would love to name them one by one; but I will err on the side of caution in the event I might miss one of them. As stunned as I was myself by my reaction, I couldn't help but well up with tears when I said my good-byes.
To all my friends who stopped by and spoiled me or sent me get-well wishes: a big hug of thanks. And last but not least, to my husband Dean: I couldn't, and can't, make it through without your help. Love you, hon.
Claire L. Hebert-Dow
- Category: Letters
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