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Home Care and Sailing? How This Approached Changed These Senior Spouses’ Lives

  • Aug 9, 2017
  • Meaghan Puglisi
  • 3-min Read

When Bob and his wife Meg were referred to Lifesprk, their physician felt every day was a struggle for them. On the roller coaster of health care crises, Meg’s intensifying medical needs resulted in 3 hospitalizations within 6 months.  Each hospitalization was adding to their mounting health care costs but also their emotional trauma which was slowly robbing Meg of her independence and well-being, and as her primary caregiver, Bob’s own stress level was very high and his health at risk.

At 82 years old, Bob had become the primary caregiver for Meg and did his best, with family support, to manage all the meals and household chores. Yet the increasing stress was a risk for Bob’s own progressive health issues.  While Bob wanted to help his wife, he wasn’t in a position to care for her intense medical needs nor was he able to be a housekeeper and cook. Every ounce of energy they had was focused solely on Meg’s medical care and basic survival – it took over their entire life. They were so focused on just ‘getting by’ every day, that any thoughts of enjoying life and igniting their purpose were gone. The doctor suggested home care so they called Lifesprk.

Their Lifesprk Experience – Call for a Free Consultation

When Bob & Meg met their Lifesprk Life Care Manager (nurse) Denise, they expected her to help with Meg’s acute health needs and coordinate home health aides or caregivers for meals and household chores. But they were surprised that Lifesprk’s discovery process went further than those immediate priorities. Using Lifesprk’s whole person senior care model, Denise worked to get to know Bob & Meg to identify what was most important in their lives.

While the two main priorities were to stabilize Meg’s health and to senior care servicesalleviate Bob’s stress, Denise never lost sight of the ultimate goal for either of them. She learned that Bob had been an avid sailor, loving the ‘wind in his face, the speed of the boat, and the feeling of peace.’ “I sure did love it,” Bob noted. He explained he wasn’t able to sail anymore because it was too hard to get in and out of the boat. In fact, he had never been sailing with his 13-year-old grandson, Cavan.

Proven Results

Meg went from 3 hospitalizations in 6 months to zero. Denise’s proactive guidance kept their health on track, catching little issues early – it’s why home care alone isn’t enough.  And with Bob’s stress reduced, the couple refocused their energy on enjoying the activities they had been missing. Denise even worked with the Wayzata Yacht Club to arrange a special sailing opportunity for Bob along with his son, Peter, and grandson, Cavan. Bob once again was at the helm, with the wind in his face, passing on his passion for sailing. For two years, Lifesprk continued to provide assistance, including easing

Bob’s transition to hospice as his health gradually declined, and supporting the family throughout, enabling them all to live with a spark in their lives.

“I never thought I’d get back out on a sailboat. It just goes to show that anything is possible with Lifesprk at the other end,” said Bob.

Interested in learning about whole person senior care options for you or your aging parent? Call us at 952-345-0919 to schedule a FREE consultation today.


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