When I first was on my own, I realized that I had a lot to learn. First, I was in charge of my own life, and making my own decisions about everything. When I lived with my mom, she would help me make decisions, or would make household decisions without discussing them with me. Now I have to make all of my decisions. But I do have people who will help me along the way.
Besides being in charge of my own life, I am in charge of my own staff. I am their supervisor. Being a supervisor is very challenging at times, but I am learning as I go along. Supervising staff can be a challenge because sometimes I felt my staff was not used to taking directions from me, as a person with a disability. Sometimes I thought they did not take me seriously. I realize that a disabled person’s situation is unique because of many of us needing such personal care. Sometimes , I think it is hard to separate the supervisor from “the patient”. But I am learning to have more self confidence, and I realize that I can be in charge and keep the respect of my staff. I respect them and all they do for me, as well.
When I was still living with mom, I did not realize how many day to day household responsibilities that she had, that I just took for granted. I knew she had to go grocery shopping, but I did not realize how much groceries really cost. The first time I did the shopping, I could not believe how much I had spent for what seemed like not a lot of stuff. But my staff person helped me realize that I had done well, because some of the things I bought would last me several weeks. I had to look at the bigger picture.
Even remembering to buy household supplies, like dish soap, laundry detergent, paper towels is something I need to remember some times. My housemates and I share the responsibility of buying household cleaning supplies, I just need to remember to take my turn too. I should let you know here that we each buy our own food, but sometimes we put stuff together and share a big meal together.