Saturday, January 9, 2010

Not Ideal, But Maybe Best

A couple of months after I started working at the agency I helped move Jane, a client who had been working intensively with Cara, another case manager. Due to a car accident that took place 5 years ago, Jane suffers from brain damage that affects her memory and comprehension. Cara coordinated a good part of the move, calling the movers, landlord, etc on Jane's behalf.

I still remember the day of the move, looking at Jane pace back and forth, looking around her in disbelief. Jane and Cara had discussed the move and logistics such as where Jane's belongings would go in her new apartment. But the day of it seemed overwhelming for Jane. It was her first move in 20 years.
 

A few months later Cara left and I started working with Jane. A few weeks ago we learned she was found in lease violation and will need to move. For confidentiality reasons I won't go into details but if my agency had been notified in advance of what was going on we would have had more time to deal with the situation and may have been able to address it. [Although Jane had moved to a new apartment it was still under the same management company.] By the time we were contacted management was fairly adamant it wanted Jane to leave.

The idea of moving her again sounds incredibly overwhelming. To her and staff. The packing, organizing, not to mention finding another place to live. Jane expressed she wants to move to a building that has more support and I agree that it would be best for her. She lived independently for years after her accident but it no longer seems enough. Her having access to case managers on site would give more intensive support I can't give. In fact, the more I think about it I think that setting, compared to living independently, would help her flourish and give her not only a supportive outlet, but social one.

Still, a part of me dreads the move and feels a lot of pressure to find her a new home with little time to work with. Management agreed to let Jane stay for the remaining of her lease but that still doesn't leave a lot of time and usully supportive living facilities have lengthy waiting lists. The way this is happening is particularly traumatic and abrupt for Jane as well. Yes the goal is that she end up in a more nurturing and caring environment and where she is now is not supportive enough, but the process is going to be very difficult.

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