One old lady. One old house.
She had “family” who said they checked on her. But when others were called who “checked on her” what was found was:
One frail, elderly, lady.
One smelly, dirty house.
One urine soaked, dried, see through night dress, her “good one”.
One little white haired lady with white hair matted with unknown matter to her head.
One set of yellow nailed toes with human feces caked underneath the nails.
The family did not see a problem, either because they did not check, or they did not care.
Others checked. Others reacted. Others got her help.
Others got her to the hospital where they were so appalled at her condition they took pictures.
Others worked with hospital staff, a volunteer local attorney, and an extended care facility to get her help.
She did not understand why anyone made a fuss over her. She no longer felt valued.
We understood. She deserved the fuss.
This is one case. Not a case. A person. An old person.
It was not the worst, it was not the best.
She needed help.
And it wasn’t family.
At what age do you say they don’t matter any more. At what age do you cut all funding, or never fund at all, the services to protect the fragile. At what age do they stop becoming valuable to our society?
Family should let people know when they are of no more value to to the family. It’s only fair. I would want to know when I had no value to others. I would want someone to have the courtesy to tell me.
This population has already paid their dues, they have contributed, given and served. They continue to do so. Their needing help is still serving. They are serving us reason to remain humble and giving. Because one day we will be where they are.
The very least that can be done, is the very least that has been done so far. The least that can be done is nothing. And in too many cases nothing is done. In too many homes sits one old lady. Or one old man.
The value we find in others reflects the value of us as human.
I never want my age to determine my value to my family and friends.
I want to love and be loved.
If you have not seen this.
I have seen enough for all of you.