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FROM THE EDITOR'S PEN  / A Friend's Homecoming /   Editorial List

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 A Friend's Homecoming

I just received an email from a friend who I hadnít been in touch with for some time.  He had moved back home to help his mom care for his dad. Although my friend had recently been promoted at his old job at a leading communications company before deciding to leave, he had been very lucky to find a similar position in his hometown. Both of his new job roles were demanding and time-consuming; but he dedicated himself to his new position, as well as helping to care for his parents. He worked hard to make sure that his difficult new boss and his loving parents were happy.
Amid the business trips, late hours and long meetings would be doctorsí appointments to his dadís cardiologists, rheumatologists and oncologists. This is, of course, not an unfamiliar story to most caregivers, and it helped that his mother was in extremely good health and was greatly involved with his dadís healthcare. In fact, while he did all he could to make his mom take some time to care for herself,  it was not easy since he could barely get her away from his dadís side.    
Unfortunately, things had not gone so well at the new job and he had left the firm.  While he did manage to take on some independent assignments and was enjoying his new freedom from corporate life, his personal finances had taken a pretty big hit.  But that wasnít the worst news in his message. He also went on to tell me that his parent had suddenly died, leaving their entire family shocked and dismayed. The shocking thing, of course, was that the parent that they were mourning was not his dad, who was now terminally ill, but his mom, who had been in good health and whose decline happened in the space of a single hour.
Now my friend is left to wonder if he could have done anything more to help his mom see how important it was to take care of herself. The answer to that question, he will never know.  But, he wanted to make sure that I shared his story with all the caregivers that I can.
My friend, I am truly sorry for your loss, but happy to oblige.


Gary Barg

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