As a Director of Care Coordination of Rothkoff Law Group, I have unfortunately witnessed how the current pandemic has affected the lives of so many vulnerable older adults. As we still digest our Thanksgiving dinner and prepare for the holiday season before us, many people (myself included) are facing the disappointment, anger, and grief of not being able to spend the holidays with our loved ones as we have in years past.
Sure, I had my own personal woes that I can attribute to “typical 2020;” but I have reflected on the last few months and realize that despite all the sorrow that 2020 has brought us, I have so much for which I should be grateful both personally and professionally.
Although challenging, supporting our clients over these last few months has been so rewarding; I feel privileged to be part of a wonderful team whose primary goal is to advocate for the needs of our clients. One of the most difficult impacts of the current pandemic has been the inability for families to see their loved ones residing in long-term care communities. I am currently working with a client who was residing in a long-term care community in Lancaster, PA; however, her closest daughter resided in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Due to the restrictions in place, her daughter would drive nearly an hour and a half to briefly visit her mother through a window every one or two weeks. Since starting services with RLG, our client received a devastating cancer diagnosis. After a discussion about the benefits of hospice, our client signed on to services and in November, I facilitated her transition to a hospice unit minutes from the daughter’s home. Since making the move, her daughter has been able to make in-person visits with her mother on a nearly daily basis. Her daughter recently shared how glad she is that they made the transition, and I could not be happier to have been the one to bring them closer.
Personally, I moved mid-quarantine and even with restrictions in place, I have enjoyed getting to know my new suburban neighborhood. I live near an entrance of the Pennypack Trail in Pennsylvania; after years of city life, I have I gained a new appreciation for a walk in the park, enjoying my natural surroundings. My sister is expecting her second child any day now. My parents, my siblings and I could not be more ecstatic for the newest addition soon-to-arrive! In June my brother adopted a new dog. After 33 years of begging for a family dog, I am thankful to have one close enough that I can appreciate, but more thankful not have to be the one to walk her on cold winter nights.
I am no exception to the challenges that 2020 has presented, but it is important to acknowledge all that we must for which we should be grateful. I have my health, I have my family (personally and professionally), and I although I will not see all of my extended family during this holiday season, I have hope for future memories we will have together.