Well the ink is barely dry on the tenancy agreement, and we have the keys in our sweaty hands.
DS and DN (nephew) are beside themselves with excitement. Just two blokes sharing their own place. DN has lived away from home for a year already, and will move in with DS as his overnight carer in exchange for a 'rent-free' deal. That said, as co-tenant, his income is taken into consideration to calculate rent. That's okay though as he is paid a meagre wage as an aged care worker (shameful really) and he comes as a ready-trained package as DS's carer, so all will be well.
Of course that still leaves an enormous shortfall in terms of actual carer hours we require to replace what I currently do, but we'll work around it as best we can. It always left me with my head shaking, that now, as a young disabled person living independently, the powers that be will do their best to make us all believe that we can make do with far less in terms of paid carer hours. Which, in reality, leaves us relying upon the goodwill and good intentions of a large circle of friends, family, and volunteers to call in on DS to fill the gaps. This can be done, and is being done by other families, so we are all looking forward to putting it into practice. In reality, I will drop in twice a day, pop in a load of washing, sweep, and prepare some meals in advance as well as the evening meal. Lunch prep and assistance, dinner assistance and toileting/showering will be done 4 days a week by paid carers with....you guessed it....'Mum' taking up the slack....so not perfect. But it will be a start, and as time wears on, I am confident that we will source other funding and/or carers from that elusive place called Somewhere.
We have plans for an Assistance Dog as well, but the organisation that provides them free of charge has such a long wait, that their list is currently closed for an indefinite period of time. This leaves us no option but to source our own dog and have it privately trained. We favour a whippet as we already have one and they are an ideal unit living dog...believe it or not! Quiet, obedient, clever, very little grooming, happy to lounge around, and great companions.
Thank goodness for our SS ways over the last few years, for without them, DS and we, would be without the small nest egg we all have, which is about to be eaten away by purchases of whitegoods, furniture and household paraphernalia. We are holding off though, as we have approached the local Lions and Rotary to see what assistance they may be able to offer....even if it's a discount at a local electrical retailer.
We have set ourselves a goal of one month. Yes, that's a months' rent paid for no reason, but it will take us that long to mobilise everything and get it as right as it can be for DS.
Off to write another 10 letters seeking support of one kind or another. I think we will have some success there....you'd be surprised how many people genuinely want to help.
My head is spinning with ideas and plans yet to be hatched!