Sometimes, the best thing is to let go
After spending the better part of two days making phone calls and searching the Internet for an answer about how to handle my mom’s dental needs, I finally had to let go. The fact is that most of these social services are tailored for kids, which is understandable. And some of the numbers I called were simply answered by a machine that required me to leave a message. When I reached the point of frustration where I couldn’t think straight anymore and my mind was running in circles I took a break.
I did what works best for me: exercise. I went to a spin class and pedaled the anger and frustration out of my body. The great thing about a really hard workout like yesterday’s is that you’ve only enough energy to focus on getting through the workout, and you can’t think of anything but that. When I was done, I knew I’d let go.
We’re just going to pay for the dental care ourselves. We’ll look into the loan against Mom’s house, but for now, we have to get started and get her mouth healthy again. We can’t wait. She is the part of this equation that matters. But still, I wonder: what about those people who have no one to advocate for them?
The Texas Association of Community Health Centers (TACHC) represents what it calls “safety-net health care providers” in our state. Some of the agencies I called were part of this network, though some — maybe most — require a person receiving their service to be a member of that community health center. Here is the “about” page for TACHC: http://www.tachc.org/About/Welcome.asp. Their member locations page:http://www.tachc.org/About/Membership/Member_Locations.asp
In Dallas, there is an organization called La Voz del Anciano that serves as a referral agency for elderly, low-income Latinos. It’s a good starting point. Their link: www.lavozdelanciano.com.
What I’ve discovered about these agencies is that it helps to register someone as a member before they have an emergency. This way, they’re already in the system when you need to access services.