One of the best things about my life these days is that I get to care for Bonnie & Clyde. I would not call myself service oriented, but being with the two of them would perhaps cause others to call me such. I am okay with that. Just don’t say it to my face.
The stories of Bonnie & Clyde are a book all their own as I told HIM the other day. I can forget about how to be a god subbie sub, just write about the past 3 years and watch the dollars roll in.
Bonnie had a massive stroke in 2007. Months before I was about to pack up and move to Henderson Nevada. I decided that I needed a new start – far away from Philadelphia – and it would be fairly close to where the ex was going to me. It would be a lovely fairytale ending to what was a challenging life for me thus far. The universe had other ideas and in 2011, here I am in Philadelphia. With Bonnie (who was part of what I wanted to run away from) and with HIM.
In the beginning there was Valerie – after I finally got her thieving leeching ass out of here there was just the three of us.
Teff and the girls were here for a time, but it’s been the 3 of us for longer than it’s been the 3 if us with company.
When I realized that Teff had to go, I made the decision to enroll Bonnie in the Home Assistance Waiver program. Its offered by the state, and it provides services to the elderly they would get in a nursing home, except it happens in home. It was designed to help the elderly stay in their home rather than be shipped out to elder care facilities. Quite honestly and elder care facility would be simpler but I was never promised simple.
One of the services that Bonnie gets is a home health aide multiple days a week. It is a great benefit to me because it allows me to do things like sweep the floor. It seems like a simple thing, but if you understood the amount of time that Bonnie needs in a day you would understand that there were some dirty floors in this house for a while.
I chose as the agency to provide services a home health care service that a friend works for, I figured, his momma owns the company if things go wrong I have a faster lane to the HNIC.
It seems like a simple thing. Pay someone an hourly wage to assist with care for those who need it. Not nuclear physics – not advanced calculus. Show up on time, wash the clients ass, make the client laugh once or twice, leave start again the next shift.
Apparently I have no clue about how difficult this job is.
The first aid that they sent to us had a total of 6 teeth. Okay I can over look that. The job doesn’t provide health insurance, dental is costly, the teaching hospital has a long wait time often. What I was not able to overlook was that she attempted to steal my ATM card on day 2.
The next lady they sent had teeth in the double digits, Regina. Regina had issues with working though. She showed up on time. She was pleasant. She sat in the chair until I told her something needed to be done. She did it and sat back into the chair. Now I get that our situation is a little different. Most clients who get these services don’t have a family member on site. What I don’t get is why I have to explain, its 10 am mom has been up for 2 hours do you think you could toss her a bowl of cream of wheat while I dust the ceiling fans?
After Regina we had a series of forgettable replacements. They all had to go for one reason or another. Honestly some of them went because they annoyed me.
There was a young lady who came who didn’t want to bath Bonnie because the water would get under her fake nails and onto her 7 jeans. When she left we got Shannon.
Shannon was bright and bubbly and energetic. Bonnie loved her, Clyde liked to look @ her ass, Shannon needed to be told things only once and she let me do me. I called the agency and said praise mandisa you have finally sent someone here who fits with our family. THANK YOU!
Shannon was with us for months. She was Bonnie’s girlfriend, spoiled her rotten. She helped me with Clyde on the rare occasion I wanted to do something like go outside for something other than groceries. I wanted to adopt Shannon and keep her forever and ever. Shannon left the company.
I will be honest. I considered killing her. I didn’t though, even if I thought about it. Although she told me part of the story about why she had to leave, I begged and begged Shannon, call the agency! I can convince them to let you back in! We can do this! We can be a family again! I did everything but break out into NKOTB Please Don’t Go Girl.
Alas it was not meant to be so it was back on the search for a new ‘permanent’ aide for Bonnie. They sent us Toni. Toni had ADD in HD or some other affliction that prevented her from sitting the fuck down. By the time Toni got here I’d learned some lessons. I had a tighter schedule and was much more specific in what needed to be done for Bonnie. I thought it would work.
That didn’t stop energizer Toni though. If she couldn’t start running at 801am she was just going to make my life miserable. Toni what are you doing? Cleaning the bathroom. Toni don’t clean my bathroom, I am specific on how I want it done. Go drink some sleepy time tea and read the paper please. Toni what are you doing? Vacuuming the floor. Toni don’t vacuum the floor, the boy just tripped over the cord, we don’t vacuum until after breakfast. Have a xanax and go sit the fuck down please. Toni what are you doing? I thought I would get on the treadmill and burn off some energy. Toni falls off the treadmill. I have vizionz of skyrocketing insurance premiums.
Toni left and we got Ruth.
Ruth was a little more seasoned, and was the anti Toni. Not quite Regina, and certainly no Shannon, but Ruth worked and Bonnie didn’t try to kill her so finally again we have settled on someone who looks like they will work for us.
I even went so far as to alter our scheduled care hours to keep Ruth. Now under no circumstances did I want Ruth here till 5pm on a Wednesday, but to keep her I changed the hours.
9 am is not a good start time for the house, because on the days I need to handle business, I need to be walking out of the door by 9. Not waiting to see if the aid will show up at 9. But to keep her I did it.
No good deed goes unpunished apparently.
Ruth started showing up when Ruth felt like it. 915 911 940 908. Nine not gonna be able to do it. So I talk to Ruth, what’s going on? Is there something that I can assist you with? How can I help you through this since YOU picked this time because YOU said it would work. I get excuses like, my cat got stuck behind the heater.
Animals lovers will now write me because as far as I am concerned fuck a cat. I seriously mean fuck a cat. Unless you want the WHOLE house to be eating cat food you need to be to work on time. The cat hopped his dumb ass back there the cat will hop his dumb ass back out when he’s ready, or he will still be there when you get home. Fuck the cat.
So to show Ruth that she needed to be more responsible, I did not do what I have been doing the past few weeks. If she was 15 minutes late I would let her stay 15 minutes to not fuck up her paycheck. This Wednesday after the ‘cat’ incident, I did not let her stay her extra 40 minutes. In return, I got attitude.
Yes the woman caught an attitude because my understanding compassionate self requested responsibility. She left that night without saying good bye or good night. I thought it was a fluke, but then again no I didn’t.
I was confirmed that she had an attitude Thursday, her last day of the week. She walked in, I was in the bathtub getting ready for my day with HIM, and she didn’t say good morning. Hmmmmm. Okay I will deal with it later. We didn’t get back until 245 and Ruth was gone for the day. I go in to check on Bonnie & there is a note on the dresser from Ruth:
Your mom said you didn’t give her the morning pills, I did not either. Have a great weekend.
Bonnie takes medication for: Depression, high cholesterol, anxiety, high blood pressure, diabetes, blood thinners. Fucking up her medication one day likely won’t do any harm, but then again, I am not trying to find out if it will or won’t.
Mind you she’s BEEN giving mom her medicine every morning. I do the fasting blood sugar test, Ruth takes the pills out of the morning well in the pill dispenser and everything is groovy.
Is it technically her job? No. Should I be more proactive? Yes. But for months now, it’s been the same thing every morning. What changed? Her attitude. She was still up in her feelings about the 40 minutes she lost due to the ‘cat’ incident that she was willing to ignore what she’s done every day for months. And risk my mother’s health while she was at it.
Maybe it’s just me. Perhaps there are tons and tons of jobs out there. Perhaps HHA work where the patient is mostly mobile and there is an additional adult in the house are typical. Maybe the fact that we are 25 hours a week of guaranteed work, in one location, rather than hope and pray you can grab 22 hours in pick up and that you don’t have to run through the whole city is a dime a dozen.
All I know is Ruth comes in at 9ish tomorrow morning. Ruth will be leaving about 10 minutes after that. We must now break in a new one. Again.
I think I want to kill Shannon all over again.