In my caregiving role, I am a parent provider for my adult son, Christopher, and I'm a Certified Nurse's Assistant (CNA) for my adopted daughter, Suzi.
Colorado is one of three states that allows parents to be CNA providers for their child. It …
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Colorado is one of three states that allows parents to be CNA providers for their child. It would be a blessing to be Suzi's caregiver anywhere, but it's a benefit of living in Colorado.
I'm a single mom, so having professional support is invaluable. I've been on my own since I was five months pregnant with Christopher and we got the diagnosis of his Down syndrome. Colorado's programs also allow me to do this as a single mom without needing a full-time job outside of the home.
Christopher is 23, has Down syndrome and deals with anxiety. He is the reason I got into the role because I was unable to find an appropriate adult program for him due to his anxiety.
I'm a Supported Living Services (SLS) provider for Christopher. My role is to support him with accomplishing specific goals such as community activities, personal care, money management and mentorship. It's a blessing to encourage and support my son in the things he wants to do. He has big dreams — he wants to save the earth.
Suzi is 8 years old, has Down syndrome and multiple medical needs. Suzi was in Denver foster care and she needed a forever home. Having raised Christopher, I was excited to raise a girl with Down syndrome. Little did I know at the time, she would come with a complicated history and many medical issues. Nothing goes easy for her, but the professional support we have helps me be a better mom and caregiver. Plus, her smile will melt your heart.
We lived in Colorado from 1999 until 2009. Right after I adopted Suzi, the three of us did some traveling in the U.S. in a motor home. It was the ultimate family bonding experience. We came back to Colorado and settled in Golden in May of 2013. One reason we moved back here was to be close to Children's Hospital. Within the 2013 year, we had 104 appointments at Children's Hospital.Caring for Suzi and Christopher takes up most of our time — we have doctors' appointments and therapies. But we like to do family activities. We're really involved with our church, Shepard of the Hills.Caregiving allows me to be the primary care provider for the ones I love the most. The only bad thing about caregiving is the paperwork — there's a lot of it, and it's time consuming.
Written by Christy Steadman. If you have suggestions for My Name Is . . ., contact her at email@example.com.
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