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Interview Essay Example


I interviewed 76-year-old Portia Woodman. She lives in a seniors home in the southwest countryside of Georgia. The facility is also home to 45 other elders aged between 62 and 98 years. Some are unwell and are visited on a regular basis by their keen while others do not get regular visits. Additionally, the shelter receives regular visitations from advocates whose purpose is to help these elders in writing their wills and disposal of their properties and assets. These elders have varied nutritional and health conditions though Ms. Woodman is in good health.

Family History
Ms. Woodman was born in Houston in 1943. Her parents were cattle owners and owned a successful ranch in Texas. She does not have siblings and was bored most of the time. She recalls what she would call “warplanes flying the skies” in her childhood. She learned how to ride and tend to horses when she was six years old. Despite her parent’s affluence, she attended public schools for her elementary and grade school before going to high school then college. She was a career secretary. Woodman lost her parents to a road accident when she was 32 years old. She indicates that was the saddest day of her life. After their burial, she relocated to Virginia.

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She was briefly married to a Tongan-American called Umaga. They had their first child Sam, then the twins Michelle and Henry. She would later be divorce from Umaga, who later jumped off a cliff and died. She indicates that the police investigations were inconclusive. Sam, the eldest and her favorite, was a marine and died in service in Iraq in 2003. Henry is a teacher while Michelle is a nurse. She loves all her children even though they hardly ever visit her. She wishes Sam were alive as he would have visited her more. She is visited mostly by her 20-year-old granddaughter, Sam’s daughter, Kyle. Research indicates that such visitations account for 82% of these citizens’ happiest moments.

Health History
Generally, Woodman appears to be of good health and excellent cheer. She cut short her career at 56 after a fire accident that razed down her home. Her insurer declined to compensate her for the damage citing that the fire was not accidental but caused by negligence. It is also during this period that she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. She opted for early retirement because of frustration and the debilitating effects of Alzheimer’s. Additionally, she moved to the elderly caregivers after realizing that she could no longer take proper care of herself and that she could endanger her life she lived alone.

Nursing homes have higher mortality rates compared to caregivers . She is aware of the mentioned issue, so she chose elderly caregivers instead of a nursing home. She has not had any other health complications apart from the intense amnesia associated with her condition. She notes that during one of her low moments she could not remember her daughter. She asked Michelle who she was, which was met by an erratic outburst by Michelle who could understand how her mother could forget who she was. She even threatened to sue the elderly home management for giving her mother what she termed as, ‘bad medication.’

She indicates that life at the shelter is awesome though it is tough at times, especially when they lose one of their colleagues at the shelter. Additionally, such periods are usually tense and that the members together and pray for that person. Most of these deaths are caused by cancer. They usually feel sad when one of them passes away but recover within days. Anytime anyone dies it reminds her of Sam, which makes her quite emotional. Group counseling services are offered at the elderly home facilities to help them to come to terms with occurrences within these confines and outside. In such facilities, members are also accorded some time to mourn with their friends and family . Every resident at the facility is entitled to make phone calls at any time of day or night they wish to, though most residents do not utilize it.

Ms. Woodman indicates that she heard tales of bad experiences among those staying in homes and shelters when she was younger. She had heard that the guardians confined the elderly denied them their medication and food hoping that they would die quickly and leave them an inheritance. However, in the current arena, social workers and lobby groups have championed for the fast-tracking of legislation of laws that protect these senior citizens from abuse and exploitation. These policies also protect these vulnerable individuals from marauding advocates keen on making a benefiting their senility and ignoring the law . She indicates that at some point a lawyer approached her and asked her if she wanted to have a will drawn for her free of charge. The attorney knew she had quite an estate that she had inherited from her parents in Texas, but when the said lawyer know its net worth, he went back on his initial offer and quoted high legal fees for the will. However, she resolved to let Henry handle it under supervision from a legal team provided by the shelter. She then highlights how the caregivers’ facility has helped in transforming her life. She said, “I’d be long dead by now had it not been for their warm hearts. Alzheimer’s is a terrible disease, but my caregivers ensure that I take my medicine and cater to my other needs.”

Ms. Woodman’s plights and that of many other senior citizens living in seniors’ homes need multi-Escorial intervention. Often, these individuals are neglected and even mistreated. The relatives of these individuals should endeavor to visit them regularly to five the company and make them feel loved. It is also imperative that laws that protect these individuals be implemented fully to ensure their wellbeing.

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