Finding Reassurance Caring for a Loved One

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“She was a pioneer working woman of her time; she greatly enjoyed the business world and being active outside the home,” said a proud Susann Mills of her mother, Esther.

Raised in Roland Park, Esther began working for the Johns Hopkins University Faculty Club at a young age. She stayed there for around 30 years before working for L&L Supply as a bookkeeper. Her outside time was devoted to her only child and her favorite activities, which included playing golf with her husband at the Hillendale Golf and Country Club.

Upon her retirement at age 70, Esther moved on to offer her assistance at the Greater Baltimore Hospital Center business office.

“She became their mascot,” Susann said with a laugh.

Esther applied her skills and maintained that hard-working mentality into her 80s. Unfortunately, she eventually suffered a stroke and Susann, who was working and also dealing with an illness herself, had to take action and find help for her mother.

“As an only child, I couldn’t handle the care that was needed for my mother by myself,” she said.

That is when she got in touch with Ivory House Health Services, a care management company that offers home health aides and live-in care. “She has had great care with them,” said Susann. “They assist with bathing, dressing, medication, laundry, meal preparation and they take care of her grocery shopping.”

Esther, who was also diagnosed with dementia, received morning care everyday and in the past year, has also received visits in the evening. For Susann, knowing her mother is in good hands has been a great relief.

“They’re like my surrogate family who looks over her when I’m not there,” she said. “I talk with them every week and they keep me assured.”

That reassurance means a lot since Esther has been recommended to move to a nursing facility and is no longer able to communicate by telephone. According to Susann, Ivory House has gone above and beyond to ensure her mother’s safety in her current home, Pickersgill.

“She had a falling incident recently and Gladys, the weekend aide, worked overtime,” she said. “She stayed with my mom until she went to bed and was there again the next morning.”

As an adult child taking care of a parent, Susann is certainly not alone, but she made the best decision for herself enlisting the services of a company that could manage that care.

“It’s so important having another pair of eyes be there,” she said.

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