Monday, August 15, 2005

Are you a caregiver?

I’m learning I’m not alone when it comes to taking care of a parent. I always knew that I would take care of my mother when the time came. However I assumed it would be when she was in her eighties and not in her fifties.

My mother is on dialysis and it has been a roller coaster ride. A scary one. Right now she’s in the hospital because of a low heart rate. The doctors can’t figure out why its low or what to do.

Its hard being a caregiver of a parent because they are adults and sometimes they act like kids. They especially resent being treated as a kid when they acting like one.

I’m in constant prayer because I don’t have a clue. This is one of those being GROWN things.

If you’re a caregiver how are you handling it? Let’s talk, maybe we can start an online support group.

3 comments:

princessdominique said...

I assisted my mother with caring for my grandmother. She's home now in her own place but yes, I can see where a support group could be helpful.

Leah Mullen said...

LaShaunda,

while I'm not a caregiver, I write for an organization called the National Organization for Empowering Cargivers. I've written over and over again that the leading cause of stress for caregivers is isolation. They offer chats and other resources.

Here's the link:

http://www.nofec.org/

Pat Byrdsong said...

Being a caregiver is hard work. It's impossible to know if you're making the right decision all the time. There are so many medical issues that you never thought about and don't know if you're getting all the information or if you're being told what the insurance will cover. And it's hard for other people to understand that you're not available to do certain kinds of things because your energies are being spent elsewhere.

There is a magazine called Healthy Caregiver. that offers some strategies and help. The website is http://www.healthycaregiver.com.

But the hardest thing is taking time for yourself so that you can handle the responsibility of being a caregiver. I recently met a woman who is the caregiver for her mother. She hadn't been on a vacation for over fifteen years. She was taking the weekend off and was terrified. She felt guilty and wondered how she would live with herself if something happened to her mother.

A friend is the major caregiver for her elderly mother who doesn't speak English well. She's doing the best she can but it's overwhelming.

I don't know how anyone can do it by themselves. It's a daunting task, but there is a measure of joy in knowing you are assisting the one(s) whom you love. And there is a level of peace that comes with caring for another.

I definitely think an online group would be great for sharing information and experiences. Especially in dealing with insurances and dealing with long-term care. It's a maze.

The love and care that you can provide are not only instrumental in terms of the person's care but also cn give you a level of satisfaction that you're doing all that you can for the one you love. And it's a wonderful way to show love and show your children and others the true meaning of loving another unconditionally.