Pam Halter
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Parents Blog

Happy Birthday
2/15/2013 5:32:13 AM by: pam

Yesterday was my birthday. We're in Williamsburg, VA, for President's Weekend, as we do every year. It's a nice getaway and change of scenery. The only downside this year is that the Owner's Association took out the hot tubs.  We did enjoy the hot tub. So, did Anna.

I turned 54 yesterday. That means next year, I'll be 55 and considered a senior citizen in some places. I can't comprehend it. I no more feel like a senior citizen than fly in the air. But it got me thinking; I will be old some day. Too old to take care of Anna. This thought makes me shiver. For one, I worry about her care. Who will be doing it? I'm assuming my daughter, Mary, will, but who knows where she'll be then? Secondly, I worry that the entirety of the rest of my life will be spent taking care of Anna. I'm tired NOW, how will I be feeling in 20 years?

I don't WANT to be doing this in 20 years. I want my life back! How many times have I told God this? Too many to count. But I'm tired! So very tired.

Do you have future plans for your children? Do you know who will take care of them when you can't? We got guardianship of Anna when she turned 18. The judge told us to make sure we knew who would take care of Anna when we couldn't. Not to wait until we were 80 or, God forbid, if something happened to us and Anna had no one to step in and take her. We talked to Mary and she understands she'll be Anna's guardian someday. We'll turn it over to her when she's settled somewhere, but Anna will remain with us. We've done some work on that, too. Anna is on the list for residential care. It's a 15-20 year wait. But it's not with the intention of placing her somewhere. When her turn comes up, we can turn down placing her in an institution and instead hire someone to come into our home and help us. That's the plan, anyway.

I don't want to do this for the rest of my life, but I may have to, and I'm making plans to that end. If you haven't, please do.  And Daryl and I would like to help. If you have any questions, we'll be happy to share our experience and what we've learned.  Let us know! Happy Birthday!


Comments

pam From At 2/20/2013 5:03:38 AM

The most important reason to have guardianship is so you can make medical decisions. And you have time - guardianship is not necessary until she is 18. Before that, you have guardianship because she's a minor.

BB From Vermont At 2/19/2013 9:10:04 PM

I never thought about establishing guardianship for my daughter before, but you're right. If we suddenly up and croak, or suffer a serious medical issue that impairs our ability to care for her, she will need someone. I don't like to think about this, but I'm going to have to. Darn.

Julie Ann Monzi From Gettysburg At 2/15/2013 9:08:15 AM

It is so important for parents to get guardianship of their disabled children. And I share your fear, Pam, as to what will happen in the future. Thank God for your Mary!

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