We found a room-mate, and I’ve had to turn her down.
There’s so many reasons that I don’t know where to start. Number one reason, is that Becky isn’t ready. She’s been moody, occasionally rude, and has no understanding of privacy or personal space. I wonder if her hearing is going because her t.v. is on so loud. If I’m in the living room, she’ll come and watch t.v. out there even though I am trying to read a book. Her response, quite correctly, is that it IS her condo. Yep, it is, and no signs of a willingness to share it.
Secondly, she has not reached a level of independence that enables me to leave her alone, with support, for a day, or sometimes, five minutes. She needs to manage on her own for about two hours if she is going to live independently from me. Becky did this for several years at the house prior to moving to the condo. Now, I am regularly getting phone calls to return home because Becky does not want to be left alone. She was alone for one minute on the first occasion and was still with the support workers on the other occasions. This would mean that either I, or the potential room-mate, would be required to be at the condo every evening. That’s a pretty tall order. I am find it stifling! Let me out, let me out!
Thirdly, we are still having problems with the buses. Can you believe that they actually put Becky on “standby”? She’s not waiting for a cheap flight to the Bahamas, she’s waiting for public transport! I was on hold for fifteen minutes Monday morning, while I was putting on Becky’s splints, doing her standing, packing lunch, and trying to find out whether Becky would be picked up that afternoon or not. The final answer came in, she was still on standby. Huh? How would you contact her to let her know she had a ride, what is she supposed to do if she doesn’t? I told them to cancel it and we’d make other arrangements. The city does not allow you to book more than a week ahead and the office is only open Monday to Friday. You also have to check the day before to see whether they actually are showing up and at what time. It is not unusual for it to be thirty minutes after the booked time. How does this help people with special needs? It is way more complicated that public transport and it is really inconsistent in terms of service provided. Imagine if you had to book, a week ahead, every single bus trip you needed to take. Imagine if they turned around and said, “we’ll put you on a waiting list”. Imagine if you had to phone every day to see what time they might show up. Phew. I think I went on my soapbox a bit there, but this is so key to Becky’s future independence and it just isn’t working.
Tom and I have had a few heart-to-hearts and have come to the conclusion that Becky cannot be rushed; independence cannot be rushed, so we have altered all our plans, yep, all of them, and extended the timelines to next summer. It is better to do this slowly, safely, carefully, rather than rush something and have to clean up a disaster.
So, dear readers, fellow bloggers, I will be blogging about Becky and her path to independence for many more months to come.