About April B.
My story is not about me but about my sister. Not my biological sister but my YaYa Sister, Jodi Leary, who lives in Normal, IL. But Jodi’s life has not been anything close to Normal.
Her daughter Katie Leary has already submitted her story about her mom. But there is so much more to be said. Actually, words are not even enough to express all that Jodi has been as far as a caregiver. I’m sure that I don’t have enough room to share it all. Let me start with Paul and go backwards. 2016, Jodi’s husband Paul died after 4 amazing years of fighting Prostate Cancer. Jodi did everything that she could to help Paul, be the caregiver and mostly his Advocate. She took notes, she asked questions, she read, she researched, she gave medication, she took care of wounds, she held his hand and there is so much more. She was also being Mom, Teacher assistant with special needs children at school, Friend, Daughter, Sister and beyond. Again, there is not enough words to express all of these 4 years and now the 2 years since his death.
Now going backwards, Jodi has fought her own battle with cancer and during treatment she even found herself pregnant with her & Paul’s 4th child. Jodi fought the battle and won.
Before that, around 1992, Jodi’s husband Paul was at work related accident. He was in a ‘cherry picker’ raised high and the truck fell over. Paul was hurt very badly, it was a miracle that he was alive. He spent weeks/months in ICU and rehab at the hospital. Again, Jodi was the CAREGIVER. She nursed him back to health.
One more time, when their youngest child at the time was just 1 or 2 years old, he was playing in the pool. He had his water wings on. Jodi noticed that she didn’t see her son and saw him at the bottom of the pool. Paul jumped in the pool and brought their son to the top, where he resuscitated him. The rescue squad came and took that dear little boy to the ER. That little boy lived and who took care of him, who was his CAREGIVER, Jodi.
For many years Jodi not only took care of her family but was a CAREGIVER to other people’s children in her home and now in the school system.
Jodi has 4 grown children now, she has been there for them for all the ups and all the downs and yes there are many more stories to share but not enough words or time.
Jodi struggles every day with missing Paul. She’s also dealing with multiple health issues and in constant pain, but she is still going to school to care for other people’s children.
This woman is instinctively “CAREGIVER”.