My name is Ann. I was working with Mary, a senior peer counsellor for almost exactly one year. My case manager from the Health Authority thought that it would be helpful for me to talk with someone. She thought I was becoming isolated and I admit I did feel very unhappy.
My husband was homebound and he didn’t like me to leave him alone. I did have to go out to get groceries and sometimes just to get out. He would get very worried and upset even if I was just a few minutes later than I said, so I didn’t go out often or for very long.
My husband had a really bad hearing problem so we couldn’t even talk very much. I was feeling pretty lonely and frustrated.
The peer counsellor came in almost every week and we talked about my feelings and how I was coping with what was going on in my life. We talked about all sorts of things. I could cry and that was okay. It didn’t matter; she was always so kind. I was able to get some help from an agency who sent in someone to sit with him so I could go out without worrying about him.
After awhile my husband got pretty sick and after he fell in our apartment he had to go into hospital. He didn’t come out. It was so comforting to have someone like Mary to help me through those first days. She was such a help. There were so many issues along with the grieving.
When I started to feel better we talked about what I could do to get out and get back to meeting and being with people. She helped me find some very good resources. I was determined I was going to get busy again. I’m still pretty healthy and I used to enjoy doing many things.
Now I am getting used to being alone and we have decided that she doesn’t need to come on a regular basis. She still calls me sometimes and I’ll never forget what she did for me.