#3. You Have To Learn To Deal With A Lot Of Bizarre Side Effects
In spite of the insane assumption that caring for your own parent makes you a bum, Elice has learned her way around more than a few medical emergencies. “I have a working knowledge of strokes and seizures. I can tell before someone is about to have a seizure. I’ll never get used to it, but I’ve gotten adept at it. Sometimes, people’s eyes get jittery up and down — it’s terrifying to see. That indicates that a seizure is happening. Neurological issues show up in the eyes first.”
Yeah, remember when we said you don’t need any training to do this sort of thing? Well, it turns out that a few months of this job will turn you into the world’s foremost expert in your loved one’s specific symptoms. “My mother speaks German. Sometimes she will speak German playfully, but she will lose her English when she has an episode. I have to try to get her to stop speaking German playfully so [that] I can tell when she just doesn’t have those English words.”
Sound too bizarrely specific to be true? It can get even weirder .
Of course, Elice has become adept at other less impressive but just as heroic aspects of the job as well. “I can guarantee you that shit never gets easier to clean up, regardless of how old a person is. When they have those warnings on commercials where a medication says it may cause explosive diarrhea, they are not kidding. Sometimes a doctor changes up her medication, [and] it makes for a lively night for all of us.”