In His Hands

Last year I posted a blurb about a benefit concert for the Coddington family. In 2008 the mom, Marian, suffered from an aneurysm followed by several brain hemorrhages. Their insurance company declared her to be in a vegetative state and deemed rehab medically unnecessary. For the last year or more almost all of Steve's (the dad) income pays for a caregiver to watch Marian while he's at work.

Steve's coworkers at the St. Pete Times organized last year's benefit as well as another call for help earlier this year. Being underemployed I had no money to give but I did have some time on my hands. So once a month I'd drive down to their place in Apollo Beach and play caregiver to Marian while Steve took their two cooped-up kids out to play at museums, parks or the beach.

Last month when I thought my marriage was ending I even moved in with them and had a great time as the much-needed second adult in the household. Steve has been so bogged down with worry, paperwork, and just trying to get through each day that he's forgotten or lacked the time to change air conditioner filters, take out the recycling, and train the puppy.

I've happily moved back into my own home, but find myself at a loss in terms of helping them now. Life would be so much easier for him if he got Marian into a nursing home, which the government would pay for, yet financial assistance to pay $300-400 a week (much cheaper than a nursing home) for a caregiver is out of reach. Marian sits on Medicaid waiting lists, Steve waits for the health care reform laws to kick in...they take each day as it comes while praying for relief.

The mom for whom therapy is "medically unnecessary" yelled out "Bye!" to her husband the other day when he announced he was off to work. A few days before I was sitting with her and watching black & white episodes of Ed Murrow's See It Now. One featured singer Marian Anderson receiving an award in South Korea, and then singing "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." Our Marian joined the songbird Marian a few lines in, and together they completed the song.

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