Friday afternoon was drawing to an end, and I was getting ready to start my weekend and head home. the phone rang and I sighed. I wanted to go home! But, instead, I answered it.
I could only understand the woman asking for me as she was just crying. I finally quieted her enough to find out she is one of our 99 year old clients. She had just gotten 2 Wisconsin Energy bills; one for her unit and the other for her unoccupied upper unit. She could not understand why the upper unit was so much less than hers. Her mind then took her to remember a loud noise” coming from upstairs” earlier in the day. She feared the noise was the pipes bursting up there.
She tried calling WE to have someone come and inspect. No was the answer. She called many other people and agencies, and was always told no.
So I told her I would be there in 15 minutes.
When I got there, she was still crying. I asked her if she saw any water coming thru her ceiling, to which she hadn’t. She gave me the keys for the upper unit, and up I went. There was nothing wrong. I ran her faucets and opened cabinet doors. All good!!!!
I reported my findings to her, and she cried some more. Her mind is totally “with it” but the combination of the bill and the noise put a terrible fear in her that she was going to have a huge repair cost.
I have no idea of what the noise was. It is an old home….could have been settling in that horrible bitter cold we had.
I knew she needed sometime to settle down some more, so we began to just chitchat. Her favorite subject is current affairs. After a several minutes of banter, I sensed it would be ok to leave her. I gave her a hug, and she grabbed me like she didn’t want to let go. I kissed her on her forehead, and she almost started crying again. I said something to tease her, and she laughed and wiped her eyes.
Thanks for your remarkable service to our community, Jane!
This is why the Cathedral of St. John supports the work of ESS. To learn how you can be involved as a volunteer or a recipient of services, visit www.essmilw.org or call Jane at 414/210-5881. We know she will answer and provide the personal touch with make ESS services so special.