Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Holiday Coping Tips by Sarah Evans

The holiday season is fun, but it can be lonely and stressful for some people. We see images of excitement and family everywhere. Sometimes, that doesn't match our reality and that over-hyped holiday season can make us feel like there is something wrong. We may feel out of our routine with have to spend time with people that we normally wouldn't. Ultimately, that shouldn't stop us from enjoying time with others.

On a positive note, the holidays can be a chance to reconnect. Having the ability to catch up can be refreshing or on the flip side, argumentative. It is important to set limits. Keep things light and fun. Don't bring up controversial issues or those things they might trigger old wounds. Also, remember to take time for yourself and plan to spend time with those who you know are going to support you and do things that you enjoy.

 I hope you have a very happy holiday and many blessings in 2016.

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

A Non-User Friendly System by Sarah Evans

A week ago, I had a very frustrating experience with my attendant service provider. I was having some medical issues and needed help with something that I wouldn't normally have to do and can't do by myself. I was told that my personal support workers were not trained to help me with what I needed and that I would have to have a nurse come over. When I asked if they would send a nurse, they told me that I would have to get a doctor's note saying that I needed a nurse. They suggested that while I was waiting for all that to be arranged, I could take an alternative form of the treatment or get a relative to help me.

I was very upset about this. I understand that there are systems in place that work a certain way, but it was kind of an emergency situation and I needed help. I want to be independent and feel like I should not have to rely on family. Although I know that my family is there for me, I want to be fair to them, too.

Fortunately, I am on direct funding now, which means that I can manage my own attendants and direct them to do what I need done. But even though agencies have rules, I think that they have to be more flexible and keep the individual's needs at the center of the care that they offer.