Everyone Needs Someone
My best friend for over 45 years lives in British Columbia and has for the last 40 years, but we have remained very close.  Over the years she has told me about her eccentric aunt who is only 11 years older than her and lives in Toronto.  About a year ago things really went bad for her Aunt.  She lived in her own apartment, had been retired for about 10 years and was handling her finances, etc., herself.  She has been receiving Meals on Wheels and the volunteer from there advised someone that her Aunt was living in a very bad situation.  Her Aunt would not listen to anyone, was belligerent, would not let anyone in to clean her or her apartment and was not taking care of herself or her financial situation.

My friend was told about this and was also told that if her Aunt did not let caregivers into her apartment that her doctor was going to get an ambulance and admit her to the hospital.  This, in fact, did happen about 9 months ago.  I told my friend (who is her Aunt’s only living relative) that I would visit her in the hospital, no one in this world should be alone.  I did this weekly for about 6 months, got her new clothing, took her clothing home to wash, brought her chocolates and cookies and would inquire about her health, etc., from the nurses and social worker for my friend.  It took over 6 months but they finally found a nursing home for her.  My friend came from BC for a week, saw her Aunt daily and tried to tie up all of the outstanding issues for her.  She is still working on this from BC.  Her Aunt has many problems, early stages of Alzheimer’s being one.  I continue to see her, I bring my puppy with me, he jumps on her bed, and licks her face and she laughs.  She knows my puppy’s name and the staff know his name as well as she talks about him, but after all this time, I do not think she knows mine but that is ok.  I am glad that I could help her, make her smile and not feel that she was all alone.  My friend is very grateful but I am the lucky one because I have the time and the means to help her Aunt.

I have attached a poem that I wrote for the elderly who are in situations similar to her Aunt.

The Elderly
When you are elderly you have lived many years
Someone who has shared love, laughter and many tears
Someone who may be wise and sweet
But a very dear and precious person to meet
The world should welcome him/her with open arms
Most definitely the world will be wiled by their many charms
Their days are filled with anxiety, laughter and many times fear
Maybe someone could help them with this throughout the year
It does not have to be a  loved one, daughter or son
It can be anyone
Sometimes they like to give advice, direction and restriction
Take it with grace and do not consider it a conviction
The most important thing is you will feel fulfillment and will be rewarded
By helping and taking care of others so they can move forward
Everyone needs to know they have someone who cares about their life
This eliminates a lot of sadness and strife

Love,
Someone who cares, not a relative
Deborah Brown