Monday, November 05, 2007

B12 and Caregivers

This newest post was going to be all about how much I love B12. We've been giving Grandma a B12 shot each month for about a year and a half now and she's always a little better right afte the shot. Well, we recently began giving her B12 pills to supplement the shot. Oh, boy! Mrs. Hyde is making a lot fewer appearances lately and those times she does visit are a lot shorter. I might start taking the stuff myself.

Now, to those of you dealing with caregivers that come on while you work, what do you do when this happens? On Mondays, I go into work late, losing my $1.50 shift differential, since Mom has to be at work by 3am and my shift doesn't start until 4am. You know we'll never find someone to start at 4am so we schedule the caregiver to come by 6:30. I call for a cab to get here around the same time the caregiver should be here. Sometimes they (both cab and caregiver) can be a little late, so when the cab gets here, I go, depending on the caregiver to be there a few minutes after I leave. This did not happen today.

I called the house a few times and Mom once before my shift was supposed to start at 7am. J was still not there. So, I told my bosses that I was going to go home, stay with Grandma until J got there, then come back ASAP. I got home in 45 minutes. It's a ten-minute drive by highway, but a 45 minute to an hour walk home. I'm already beat. And J still is not here. I called her cell, but got no answer. I called Mom and she told me to giver her an hour to respond, then call Telespond.

I can't afford this shit. I need to make money ($10 of which I just wasted on a cab ride) and do my job. My income may not be as great as my mother's but a lot of the bills and resources are still paid by me, aside from my own bills like loan payments and medical. Now, my bosses were actually rather cool about it this time. They tend not to like it when I have to call off to take care of Grandma. Not that they're threatening to fire me, but you know that look your boss or another person in authority gives you when they're not happy with you? That's usually the look I get when problems with Grandma-sitting arise.

I called her as soon as I got in the house: 7:45. She still hasn't called back. Twenty-five more minutes and I have to deal with the wonderfully communicative people of Telespond (please note the heavy sarcasm).

I'm going to be working until midnight tonight to make up my time. :(


Nikki said...

What a frustrating experience with your caregiver! Did she ever arrive? I do understand your delimma. My grandmother cannot be left alone for any extended period of time. I would be absolutely, pissed, irate, etc. if the caregiver didn't show up. When we first brought my grandmother home, the agency we used to provide caregivers during the day was not my favorite. The aides assigned to us would show up late at least once or twice a week and then call in at least once a week. Whenever they would call in to say that they couldn't make it, the agency could not get a replacement until one or two hours later. The replacement would then call about 15 minutes prior to arrival to ask if we "really" needed her to come in to work! I thought, "No, I'm just sitting at home or my husband is has been sitting at home for the past three freakin' hours waiting for you to come AND missing work because we absolutely have nothing better to do!" Go figure! We are with a new agency now, Thank GOD!, and things have significantly improved. I feel your pain and hope you are able to find a more reliable caregiver.

Shadowspun said...

She showed up, rather late, and I got into work and was there until 11pm. Then went back in at four the next morning. It was a miscommunication somewhere. She thought she had to work, but when she drove by the house and saw no car ther (since Mom had to work early and I don't drive) she looked at her calendar and somehow had written that she was to work the next day. So, she just kept driving and didn't get her messages until almost the afternoon. It was fun.

The group that provides our caregiving is, unfortunatwly, the only affordable one in the area. The others charge as much as $28 an hour. This one charges us about $12 or $13. I guess you get what you pay for, but we don't have the resources to pay more than that, so we deal. Honestly, they're ususally pretty good. The women are nice and seem to like Grandma. That particular caregiver is usually pretty good. There have been a few times I've had to go into work very late, but my bosses are really quite decent about it. Of course, the fact that I'm willing to go in late to do my job and put in an eight-hour shift when I'll have to be there the next day only a few hours after I leave the store might be why they're willing to be flexible.