Today I attended a funeral. The mother of a member of our plant’s management team passed away last Friday after a long illness. She lived in Corpus Christi, a 90-minute drive from Victoria, and a number of us from the plant drove to the church to pay our respects.
On the way home I stopped at Doris’ apartment to deal with her insurance issues.
I ended up spending about 90 minutes there, most of it talking to various insurance administrators and specialists at 1-800 numbers. Her husband was more help than I thought he’d be, and together we figured out what coverage she used to have, and made some decisions about what she needed.
I managed to get her enrolled over the telephone, and arranged for more materials to be sent to her describing her coverage, how to submit claims and all the rest. Husband swears he will watch for the materials and save the stuff. I think I even convinced him I was not meddling in their affairs but just trying to help. We’ll see.
The point? Out of a bad experience (a friend’s mother dying) came an opportunity to solve a potentially sticky problem in one day rather than a week or more of mailing stuff back and forth.
This probably seems like a minor point to most, but to Carol’s mom (Doris’ sister), it had been a Major (capital M) concern all weekend. When Carol’s mom has a major concern, Carol hears about it many times during the day for days on end. Stress builds and sometimes spills over into Carol’s life (loss of sleep, etc.)
I just feel good that this issue was headed off before it escalated into a MORE stressful situation for all of us. So, despite Rob Hamel’s impression that my help was out of total altruism (thank you Rob, for your kind words in the comment!), I definitely had a selfish motive.
The funeral only underscored the truism that dying is a part of life, and brought my thoughts full circle back to my use of the saying, “It’s hell to get old, but it beats the alternative,” as the lead-in to my earlier post about Doris’ problem. Life's like that, too. Cycles.