This year started out with yet another HUGE change for our family. My brother, David, has Down Syndrome and is 31 years old. For the past 13 years, he has been living in a group home in Wisconsin. It has always been my parents plan for him to go there and be taken care of as they age and of course, not wanting to leave the rest of their children with that responsibility. In the past, we've all "shared" David during his vacations, often spending 2-3 weeks in Florida, Tennessee or Illinois, sometimes longer if we can orchestrate it between us all. This year since my Dad's passing, he's spent a significant amount of time with us as we felt he needed (maybe we needed it too) to be with us. During the past few months we've wondered what would happen if David could no longer stay in WI...at times I've expressed my concern with him being so far away.
Well...about 2 weeks ago, we got the call that he can no longer stay there. They are discharging about 30% of their residents and David has to go. Now, this is a huge thing for any family to find out...but we were particularly concerned because of all the other changes this past year how David would take the news and how my Mom would take the news as it would be her everyday life that is greatly impacted. All I can say is God is good. Although we do not believe we've been given the full information or truth about how the decision was made to discharge David, our family has once again rose to the challenge and taken care of business. The facility told us he would have to be gone by May 18, but my Mom said thanks but no thanks, we'll have him out by the end of January.
So last Thursday, my Mom and brother, Matt, drove to WI, packed David up, attended a going away party for him with his friends and left on Saturday to head back to Matt's in IL. They spent a couple of days with his family and today are on the final leg of David's journey home.
So, how is David handling this change? He is BEYOND excited about coming home. He has an important job to do now (take care of Mom and be a big help) and will be able to visit the rest of us more frequently than before. I am BEYOND excited that he will now be with family all the time and am so happy he is happy too. Mom is handling it all well. We've reassured her we are here for back up and I think she will enjoy having some more company around the house.
Here's a picture of one happy guy...welcome home David!