One of the worst feelings in the world is when a loved one is hurt and you can’t be there right away to help. Since I’ve spent much of my career moving around for jobs in TV news, there were quite a few times when my parents needed me and I had to drop everything to fly to New York.
Four years ago when I was living in Mississippi, I called my Mother one night and noticed something was different about her voice. She sounded like she was in bed, but it was too early in the event. I could tell she was lying down, so I asked her what was wrong.
Unfortunately, she tripped over her suitcase in the foyer and couldn’t get up. My Father (who at the time was dealing with his own health issues) didn’t have the strength to pick her up. He could only bring a pillow to rest her head on the floor and the telephone to call my brother who lives in the neighborhood.
I had to drop everything, fly to New York for a few days to care for my Father while my Mother had knee replacement surgery, as well as visit her in the hospital.
The trip wasn’t cheap, but it was necessary. Thank goodness I was in a financial position then to buy last minute airline tickets and take time off from work.
My Mother’s first knee replacement went horribly wrong. She didn’t heal well and is seeking legal action against the surgeon. Nine months later she needed a second knee replacement – this time by a more reputable doctor who operates on professional athletes. Thankfully, the surgery was a success and she was on her way recovery soon after.
Since my Mother was my Father’s primary caretaker I had to fly back to New York after the second surgery. They both needed help around the house and getting to follow-up appointments that I took unpaid Family Medical Leave (FMLA) from my TV news job for four weeks to care for them.
Fast forward to 2009, when I was pregnant and my Mom fell again. But this time she was at the gym exercising to help rehabilitate her leg and knee. This fall resulted in a broken wrist and more surgery. Since I wasn’t working I flew back to New York on a discount airline to save money. It was a horribly uncomfortable flight.
Count your blessings if you haven’t had to take a last minute trip to care for a loved one or friend.
How do you pay for a last minute family emergency?
Do you rely on frequent flier miles, savings or credit cards?
Disclosure: This post is presented by Genworth Financial
where you can learn more about mortgages and planning ahead for your family’s future.
All thoughts & opinions are 100% my own.