This month we are celebrating George (76) and Dianne Refalo (69) who join us as new residents at Moran Kellyville. Theirs will be a familiar story to many, they met each other in their early teens when George went to visit a mate who was residing with Dianne’s family and it wasn’t long before they were dating and later married in September 1969.
Together Dianne and George worked hard to raise their family and to secure themselves financially. Working together they ran a successful excavation business and George found himself building swimming pools and foundations for the growing new suburbs all around the Hills Shire.
By working hard, they were able to fulfil their ambition to travel and list America, New Zealand and Vanuatu as some of their favourite places to visit. Although George tells us that whilst cruising on the Carnival Spirit was a travel highlight, he’s not so sure he would be keen to do that again following some of the COVID-19 stories he has heard recently.
The team at Moran Kellyville met George and Dianne and their children Michael and Joanne in March 2020 when they decided to investigate the possibility of a respite care stay for them both. They had been successfully living at home with support from family for many years but found themselves needing more support with their care. Said George, “We have been caring for and supporting each other for a long time now but as we have gotten older, we both recognised that we actually can’t be each other’s carers anymore. I was finding maintaining the house and garden overwhelming and Dianne’s progressing condition made it hard for her to cope with cooking and cleaning and all the things we take for granted when we are young”.
Said Daughter Joanne – taking up the option of respite care was brilliant for both Mum and Dad, it has been a great way for them to softly try out aged care to see if it would work for them on a permanent basis. As a family respite care helped us to regroup and bought us some time to have a think about Mum and Dad’s care needs now and for the future, and how we might best access the support and services they need. As it happens, we have found a good fit for them at Moran Kellyville. Mum and Dad have very different care needs which have successfully been accommodated – now they can enjoy a new chapter of their lives together and go back to being husband and wife without the physical and emotional responsibilities of being each other’s carer.
Kiana Gohar, Moran Kellyville’s Community Engagement & Wellness Manager told us that – “This is a good example of making a pro-active decision about how you want to spend the rest of your life. George and Dianne have enjoyed a wonderful life together and they are not letting their aging years prevent that. By choosing residential aged care they are choosing to continue to live their lives together as a couple and making every day the best it can be.”
Not one to miss out on having the last word we asked Dianne about Marriage and Aged Care– Dianne said, “yes, being married is sometimes hard work and yes life has its ups and downs, but at the end of the day, I wouldn’t change it for the world. I am looking forward to spending my days enjoying beautiful food that someone else has cooked, watching someone else do my cleaning and laundry and spending quality time with my husband, children and grandchildren and of course I expect we will be making some new friends.”
If you would like to have a chat with Kiana about planning for your care needs please call 02 9881 4222 or visit Moran Kellyville HERE