Saturday, February 2, 2013

Dr. Brian Goldman, of White Coat Black Art, visited me

Dr. Brian Goldman, of White Coat Black Art, visited me in 2011, and discussed my work as an unpaid caregiver and volunteer.

Jennifer Jilks is a volunteer with Community Home Support Lanark County in Perth, about an hour's drive from Ottawa. Several times a week, Jen provides lifts, home visits, cooks, cleans, picks up prescriptions - anything to help unpaid caregivers. - something she knows only too well. 

Back in 2005, Jen was a teacher in Ottawa on track to becoming a principal. Then, her parents - who lived a couple of hours away in Muskoka - became seriously ill. Growing up is about leaving your parents' orbit. As Jen found out, becoming an unpaid caregiver is about being pulled back in - sometimes with stunning suddenness. For nearly three years, Jen cared for her parents. When she moved her father into a nursing home, she advocated on his behalf so that his pain would be managed properly. After both her parents died, Jen wrote a book about the experience entitled Living and Dying with Dignity.

No comments: