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Oct 20, 2014 • Let me start by saying I don’t really understand what’s happening. I’m not alone – I’m not sure any one person understands it all. After years pushing pushing pushing to get things to happen, now things are beginning to happen on their own?

Best maybe if I use an actual example, and YOU tell ME what this all means.

The circle starts with Hap

The circle starts with Hap

So this example starts with Hap Drupa, who lives three blocks from me. Hap is 70ish, widowed, and a bit lonely I guess. His son Tad, who lives in Atlanta, bought him a smart home setup and calls Hap quite often, but still. Hap wants “real people.” So Tad posts a request on PODCare, saying “will someone come take my dad for a walk once a week? Get him out of his bathrobe?” (LOL, Hap is not the lounge-in-bathrobe type)

So Andrea responds and says yeah, she’ll do it. Andrea’s in a wheelchair, which is kinda perfect, because shifted into low she and Hap cruise at the same relaxed pace. Tad wants to pay Andrea but she says “nuts” to that. BUT in an inspired moment Andrea gets on Silvercare and pokes around in Atlanta, and sure enough she finds Trish who’s looking for some casual help once a week with her grown daughter, Meg, who has cerebral palsy. So Andrea asks Tad if he will pay Andrea back by looking in on Trish and Meg instead?

Well this suits Tad fine because his daughter Kylie (you keeping this all straight? cuz there will be a quiz later) has community service goals in her school. So Tad and Kylie visit Trish and Meg there in Atlanta, and often Tad will call Hap from there, so it gets to be like a happy family.

So now Kylie meets Andrea, and they pal or friend or bf or Continue Reading »

Oct 20, 2014 • I know a bunch of people are angry about the bleak outlook portrayed in “Citizen Kid”, but that’s Hollywood for ya. They need to put a spin on things to get people into the theater, especially in this economy. I’m not saying that what they showed wasn’t the truth. They just chose to highlight the massive amount of work ahead of us, rather than the small successes we’ve had so far (and in such a short time!).

I must say, Kids Kare has succeeded in ways I never thought possible. We started out with adding caring issues to the curriculum at the schools, added a few after school activities and the next thing you know, we’re working with Americorps on the summer volunteer program and Columbia University sets up a research station here. Even some of Obama’s people stopped by to check us out. Pretty amazing, huh?

Now that Kids Kare, PODcare and Silvercare are joining forces, you can bet your rubies that we’ll be unstoppable!

Aug 20, 2014 • I have just learned the Emelia, the woman who helps take care of my parents, might have to leave the country?!?? Emelia is 65 years old and has lived in the US for over 30 years! This is ridiculous! I don’t know what to do. Emelia is a shining light of positive energy who came into our lives when mom had her second stroke, like an angel sent to us when we needed her most. Now she is like a wonderful Aunt who gives great advice and tries to fatten me up “because men like a little meat on those bones”. I *need* Emelia, she is family now, we can’t function without her.
Actually, little does she know, but I have recently started dating someone. I’m not ready to say who yet on who but I will say that is someone newly transplanted to Deepwell and he is a super nice guy.
Also Greta and Ingrid are Zoo Flu negative, thank god. Honestly I don’t know what I would do without my little girls.

Jun 27, 2014 • It hardly seems like four months since we lost Ida May. Valentine’s Day was always a bittersweet day for me at best, but will be doubly so now.

Since then, I have been lost. I spent so much time caring for her that I have not known what to do with myself. I’ve been rattling around in this big old house all by myself like a lone pea in a can. The loss of Ida May on top of all my cats to the double-cursed “pinkeye” or “zoo flu” or whatever the news wants to call it these days nearly killed me as well. I admit that I hoped I would get sick and die, too. A dark time for MeelieSue, ducks.

Several weeks ago I sat down with Ida May’s estate lawyer and it was no surprise to me that I was named sole beneficiary to her estate. What was a surprise was the absolute enormity of the estate itself. She had been very canny about her investments over the years. Very, very canny. I’m talking about nearly nine digits canny. I had no idea.

What’s an old woman (or a Cool Old Bat) like me going to do with all that money? I’m perfectly happy just the way I am – or the way I was, before Ida May got sick. And there’s the rub. I bet there are a lot of people out there in the world right now who are perfectly happy just the way they are right before they are struck with Alzheimer’s.

So here’s my little contribution: I have been speaking with none other than Ashleye Blackbourne and I am going to use all of Ida May’s money to set up a foundation to assist people who need Tauremopravil to stave off symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, but can’t afford to pay for this incredibly expensive drug themselves. Mental clarity should not be reserved only for the rich.

Apr 25, 2014 • I’m very excited about the opening of the Deepwell Community Mental Health Center. I’m so glad that the center was able to get the additional last minute funding from Columbia University. I’ve heard that it will utilize many of the new types of technology available like Telemedicine.

Will be great for people outside of Deepwell and maybe even people like Sam who can’t leave the house. I’m signed up to volunteer on Tuesday evenings (after yoga!). They also have a large meeting room and will have many of the 12-step meetings that people used to have to go to Ackley for.

Things are going well with PODcare, better now that the “economic” issues have been worked out. It’s so much easier to help out my parents and Sam. I mean it makes sense that if I am driving out to Robertson that I can take Mrs. Evans to her accupuncturist and if Maddie is driving to Wellsburg that my mom can go with to see her neurologist right? I also like the text blast feature. You never know when a last minute errand might benefit someone else too.

Also if anyone needs a ride to the Tompkins funeral please let me know. I have two spaces available in my car.

Feb 13, 2014 • This is a hard thing to say, but Ida May’s time is very soon now. If you have been thinking about coming over and saying anything to her, you should do it as quickly as you can. I don’t know if she can hear you – in my heart, I like to believe that she can – but I know it makes me feel better to talk to her even though she can’t say anything back.

It feels so ironic to me that I’m watching her leave me just as the “miracle cure” for Alzheimer’s is coming into play, that drug that nobody can even pronounce and everyone just calls “Tau.” Tauremonpravadil? Something like that. I haven’t had enough energy to watch the news. All I know is that there are so many people it could help, but only the very rich at this point can even dream of affording it. It’s too late for people like Ida May, but those just diagnosed? So help me, if I could keep just one person from going through what I’m going through right now, so help me, so help me. This is hell on earth.

Feb 13, 2014 • I got a CAR!!!  Silvercare has been such a success for my mom and I that we got me a brand me wheelchair accessible car!  It has a swivel wheelchair lift with auto lockdown so I can secure my chair without help and just drive!  It also has autoguide hand controls so it doesn’t bother my arthritis to drive, Voiceprint activated secure entry, rear and side cameras, Bluetooth 5.0, navigation with autopilot cruise control, and so on!  I am so excited.  This is truly freedom for me!

Oh and of course I got the car in Silver! 😀

Speaking of Silver… Silvercare has really spread!  The word is out and we are getting calls from all over the country!  We are now in several dozen locations all over the country that manage specific regions.

And people are loving the technology!  I think Silvercare Smarthouses might be the new fad.  Who would have though that people would want to broadcast video of themselves doing nothing in their houses all day just for the fun of it?  I never thought that a trend would emerge from our attempt to care for people remotely.  The emails we’ve been getting about how Silvercare has changed people’s lives for the better are amazing!  That kids are able to watch Grandma from an interface over their desk after school from the other side of the country until Mom gets home to take over has allowed people to continue to live independently for so much longer!

It’s truly inspiring to hear the success stories of disabled young adults in particular.  With our automated remote med dispension and constant monitoring for problems young adults are able to live independent lives when they never could before especially those with developmental disabilities.

I could go on and on, but I’m off to a meeting with Google.  Can you believe it?!  I’ll check in again soon!