Feeling Like Family: Being a Caregiver and Friend

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Community resident caregiverThough the search for a caregiver can be difficult, it is well worth it when one finds that trusted and compassionate individual. That is what Ann Vincent has learned with her caregiver, and friend, Joan.

An avid reader, Ann enjoyed spending her free time tending to her garden over the years. The mother of two was married for 50 years before her husband passed away.

Ann was one semester away from a master’s degree in Social Work at Temple University when she had a stroke nine years ago. As time went on, activities of daily living became harder for Ann, who was in a wheelchair.

While she lives with and receives as much help as possible from her daughter who still works full-time, they both knew it was time to look for a home care company.

“I had looked at different companies, but none of them were very successful,” said Ann.

It was two years ago that she was introduced to Steve Mekanik of Visiting Angels, a home health care company with a branch in Doylestown, Pa.

“He has the ability to hire really capable people, more so than any of the other companies I tried,” she said.

Steve helped Ann get acquainted with the nurses who would be taking care of her, including Joan, with whom she has formed a special bond.

“She is excellent and has become almost like family,” said Ann. “She stays with me and is just very thoughtful and caring.”

Joan takes care of Ann and assists her with tasks such as housekeeping, bathing and dressing. It may be safe to say, however, that Ann appreciates her caregiver’s delicious meals the most.

“She helps with making some really good meals,” said Ann. “I always smell something good coming out of the kitchen.”

For Ann and her working daughter, having a home health aide has made all the difference and provided them with peace of mind. Though she is no longer able to garden, Ann still enjoys reading whenever possible.

Though her caregiver offers a sense of security, nothing compares to the friendship Ann has formed with Joan. While it may have taken a few tries to find a reliable companion who could assist her with her daily living needs, she found one that has surpassed all of her expectations.

“She takes care of me in every way,” said Ann. “I’m very happy with Visiting Angels.”

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