Throughout his long battle with cancer, Grace cared for her husband; taking him to appointments, ensuring he took his medication and arranging for anything else he needed. When he passed away on Valentine’s Day, just days before their wedding anniversary, Grace and her family became more aware of the need to coordinate services to manage her own health issues. Her daughter Karen and Karen’s four siblings knew that they would soon need additional help and a fresh perspective.
Grace reluctantly agreed to move in with Karen’s brother. Karen and her siblings thought this would work best for their mom because her brother does not have children to care for. However, after being told she could no longer drive herself, Grace became increasingly anxious about losing her independence. Already depressed with the recent death of her husband, Grace isolated herself in her room and would not spend time with her family. Karen turned to a new workplace resource, LifeSpan’s Life Coach, Sonja.
Having read emails introducing Sonja as the Life Coach for thyssenkrupp Bilstein and hearing from her coworkers who themselves had seen Sonja, Karen reached out for some possible solutions. Sonja was able to provide Karen with resources to install handrails in her brother’s home and to set up a companion to check in with and spend time with Grace.
“One of the best things was her help in arranging medical transportation. We were having a lot of trouble between all of us getting Mom to her dialysis treatments,” said Karen.
With Sonja’s guidance, Karen and her siblings now have reliable transportation to every dialysis treatment. They also trade days picking Grace up from treatments to help her socialize and not be isolated.
Together, they decided to move Grace to one of the sister’s homes so that she could interact with her grandchildren and not be as isolated. Sonja again gave Karen information for installation of handrails for her sister’s house. With her continuous improvements, Karen’s siblings felt comfortable allowing Grace to drive to her cardiac rehab appointments.
“Sonja was warm and welcoming. I felt an immediate connection with her,” explained Karen.
Sonja provided all the necessary resources, the correct contact person, and established a realistic plan for Karen and her siblings to utilize. Even with a family full of those working in the medical field (nurses, firefighter/EMTs, paramedics, a soon-to-be flight nurse); their need for Sonja’s resources shows how crucial it is to know the right person with the right information.
LifeSpan’s Life Coaches help employees overcome the obstacles that are getting in the way of personal goals; helping them become the best employees they can. The Life Coach brings practical tools to elevate productivity and satisfaction among employees.
*Names may have been changed to protect the identity of our clients and their families.