Life hands us all difficult cards.
For 70-year-old Tom, one of his toughest was his daughter’s diagnosis. Colon cancer. It was terminal.
“They gave her three months, and she lived two years,” Tom said. “It went through her whole body.”
While his daughter was battling the cancer in her body, Cancer Services in Midland stepped in to ease the family’s hardships.
“She was getting treatments from Ann Arbor, and they helped us with gas cards and gift cards to Subway,” Tom said. “It was so helpful. Money has always been tight, so just having the gas money was a total blessing for us.”
The gift cards helped alleviate the costs that add up quickly for those dealing with cancer. Every bit helped.
A FRIENDLY FACE
On top of watching his daughter face severe illness, Tom did not have a car to drive to his own appointments or get groceries. But Senior Services Transportation Services became a saving grace…in more ways than one.
“Not only did I get to go to my appointments, but the drivers were all around my age, and it was just nice to talk to somebody who can relate to what you are thinking and feeling and what you are going through,” Tom said.
Tom said a particular drive to the dentist still makes him laugh.
“They drove me to the dentist so I could get new dentures, and we started talking about this funny commercial with a dog that smiles,” he said. “We laughed and laughed and laughed about that crazy commercial with the dog. The driver made me feel comfortable so we could sit and just laugh.”
Tom said the driver helped him feel less lonely.
“It’s hard because you can’t just talk to yourself,” he said. “I’m a social person, so it helps to be able to talk to someone.”
FEEDING THE SOUL
When you are home alone, cooking nutritious meals is not always easy or on the top of the priority list.
“Every now and then if I’ve been busy, it’s a bowl-of-cereal kind of night,” Tom said.
But then Tom learned about Senior Services Meals on Wheels that offered free, nutritious meals.
“That program is amazing,” he said. “It doesn’t cost anything. The volunteers are so friendly, and the food is good. Really good.”
He said the program allowed him to eat healthier than he would have on his own.
“I would probably just make myself a can of soup or a sandwich, but I wouldn’t have the vegetables and a protein,” he said. “My meals are much more nutritious now. I get a fruit and a milk and bread, too. It’s delicious.”
The program helps many people across the community get access to the nutrition they need. Tom said when the pandemic restrictions began, his first thought went to Meals on Wheels and those it helps.
“It would be awful if Senior Services and this program didn’t exist,” he said. “When Covid-19 started and they stopped the meal program as a safety precaution, my first thought was ‘How are these people that depend on this program going to eat?’ There are people out there that get food through this program every day because they can’t cook for themselves.”
He was happy to hear that the Meals on Wheels is back on the road delivering healthy food and providing a friendly face to feeding many souls.
WE ARE STRONGER TOGETHER.