purpose in writing this book was three fold:
To share my true feelings about the incredible journey of owning
my own business and working with the elderly and disabled. It
has allowed me to develop a business that fits a need I saw
very early. I was able to tailor the business to what I believed
was the way people should be treated in their infirmed phase
of life – with dignity and respect.
2. To show how it is better to laugh than wallow
in despair. If you laugh at yourself, you never have to suffer
people laughing at you, but rather with you.
3. That humor is a way of connecting. It has
a healing power of its own, and sometimes is the better medicine.
some of the stories of very brave clients who have taught me
many life lessons. Their memories should not be lost and this
was the best way I know how to preserve them. These clients
have my utmost respect and my thanks for allowing me to be a
part of their lives and telling their stories.
My clients helped me put this book together.
One gave me the title (unknowingly) and one painted the cover
of the book for me.
If you would like to share similar stories with
me, please feel free to email them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope you enjoy the book which I will hopefully
finish and publish in 2004.
This book is cheaper than a face lift…as
you read through it you’ll see how the corners of your
mouth turn up! Some of my clients can be as salty as corn beef,
but under their tough veneer, is usually a person who wants
to laugh. My job is to make that possible for them, as you’ll
see from these stories.
all their talk, men aren’t as brave as they perceive themselves
to be. Did you ever go to a mall with your other (who is sure
he is your significant) and need to stop at the lingerie store?
You know the store that has the catalog men deem as equally
necessary in the bathroom as toilet paper? Well, all of the
sudden the fear of being in the presence of thousands of bras,
panties, and garter belts instead of gazing at them in a catalog,
renders him powerless to cross the demilitarize zone or threshold.
Isn’t this every man’s fantasy? When asked if this
was indeed every man's fantasy, my husband replied, “Well,
not if they’re empty”. Do they not have any imagination
to create the fantasy image? Could someone explain this phenomenon
to me? Why wouldn’t they want to meander around the store
creating their own fantasy images? I guess its better this way.
Otherwise, when we choose to do the Ya-Ya thing with our girlfriends
we’d be stifled by men wandering throughout the store
with glazed looks on their faces and drool on their chins.”
we always surprised to see our derriere in a three-way mirror
after the winter hibernation (and we have no clue what happened
over the winter months)? On the other hand, I think it should
be mandatory that every woman over a certain age, or a certain
weight, have a three-way mirror installed in her closet. If
you doubt the necessity of this law, go to any airports. The
sights you see there clearly back up my belief (pun intended).
I didn’t know stretch pants could stretch so far. Sometimes
I sit there and pray that the seams of some of those stretch
pants are in fact reinforced with galvanized thread, because
some little kid could end up with their picture on a milk carton
if some of those seams ever let loose. (My best weight ever,
by the way, was 8 lbs.10 oz.) Then my mother brought me home
from the hospital with the single purpose of fattening me up.
And she was good! My baby pictures show thigh rolls that resemble
that of a Sharpei’s…”
“…when I was approaching the big
40 (OH), I found myself in a period of unrest. I had suffered
through many personal crises, and I was extremely frustrated
in my job. There was a hunger for an experience that kept nagging
at me, which I could not define as yet. A “silk-stocking”
law firm had hired me as a probate paralegal a few years previous
to this, and I was growing tired of trying to convince the male
populated firm of the need to provide additional personal services
to the elder population. It was my feeling, although not shared
by the Management Committee, that the firm had a moral, if not
an ethical responsibility to help protect and guide their older
clients through their most challenging years. Gerontology to
them and the average American (some l8 years ago) was thought
to be some foreign disease….”
“…my first client was a “genuine”
proper lady. In her day, she tripped the light fantastic with
all of the most prominent figures in our city. I affectionately
called her Claire De Bloom…. twice a year she would pack
her trunks (or rather her trunks were packed by her handmaid)
and board a ship that would leisurely sail her to the fashion
capital of the world…the room resembled a bridal shop
with racks of soft chiffons, shimmery satins, the finest silks,
and aglow with sparkles from beads and sequins. A rainbow of
color. I used to love going up the stairs in the summer when
a breeze would come through an open window and lift the fabrics
to create an exquisite, unrehearsed ballet, gracefully moving
the bejeweled objects as if they were clouds in the sky. The
walls would come alive with colors. The jewels acted as suncatchers
hanging in a window only whirling and swirling and changing
as the breeze blew across the dancers. It was one of the most
beautiful things I’ve seen…a perfect escape from
life’s cruelties. It was like a magic carpet ready to
take you anywhere you wanted to go.