As part of fulfilling my requirements to become a Certified Caregiving Consultant, I needed to facilitate an online chat, hold a phone support group call, or do a webinar. I chose the webinar as part of my ‘final’. (By the way, If you want more information on becoming a Certified Caregiving Consultant, please let me know. I have a coupon code you may be interested in).
This webinar was presented live on Caregiving.com on 3/14/2017. The recording is now available for you to watch at your convenience.
I know what it is like to be sandwiched between caring for aging parents while raising teenagers and working a full-time job. I have cared for my mother-in-law and father, and currently help care for her chronically ill mother and developmentally disabled brother.
In 2014, my world flipped upside down when my mother-in-law was in her fourth year of battling lung cancer and both of my parents were fighting for their lives. My father passed away in August 2014 putting me in an immediate position to move my mom and become her primary caregiver. That December, my mother-in-law lost her battle with cancer. I had to learn how to integrate Caregiving with my demanding family and work responsibilities and somehow not lose myself in the process.
This webinar is a result of what I have learned on this journey. You will hear practical tips on how to create time for the activities and people you love (and miss!).
A guest post written by Family Caregiver Sarah Allen
Staying Connected with Mom
My mother has taken care of me for most of my life. Now she is struggling with the early stages of Alzheimer’s Disease, and I know it is my time to step up to the plate and return the favor.
Rather than continuously visit nursing homes, rehabilitation centers and try to pay for a home aid ourselves, we moved her in with my family and I take care of her.
My sister Emily lives out of town, but is constantly looking for ways to keep in touch because she can’t see my mom every day. With so many families in our situation, most know it is hard to keep in touch with loved ones we can’t see often. Here are some ways that you can stay close to loved ones.
Finding the time to take care of your own health with all the competing priorities of work, children, and an aging parent is near impossible. There is no lost time to be found in a ‘sandwiched’ life. I’ve experienced first-hand what happens to a mother’s life (and father’s too!) when you put yourself last on the priority list. My parent’s believed they gave us everything growing up – all our needs were met and many of our wants. But because they did not prioritize their own health on their daily to-do lists, their health paid the ultimate price. Starting in their 60’s the lack of attention they gave themselves caught up to them in countless hospital visits, numerous prescription drugs, and a compromised lifestyle that caused them to be dependent on others to help care for everyday activities like cooking, showering, and running errands. I believe that my dad would still be with us and he and my mom would be enjoying their golden years and retirement savings by traveling and having the energy to maximize each day. Witnessing these choices, led me to wanting a different lifestyle for myself and others. (more…)
I witnessed a mini miracle this week. It’s been difficult to get mom to all the specialists she needs to see since my dad passed away seven months ago and we moved mom into her assisted living. Hearing aids was next on the list. Part of the reason it’s been a chore to get her to her appointments is that I have a full time job and my appointments and many of my kid’s appointments were set aside so we could help care for mom, dad, and my husband’s mom who passed last December. Appointments got backed up and oh by the way, I missed a ton of work. So we slowly chip away at the list.
Mom’s hearing has been really bad lately. One of my dad’s last requests of her was that she get her hearing aids checked. She’s probably had her existing ones for about 10 years. I know they were the best at the time and they cost a pretty penny. When someone you love can’t hear what you are saying it frustrates everyone. Mom has difficulty talking over the phone, staying awake during movies, engaging in meal conversations, and understanding her caregiver’s instructions. It impacts all relationships because the third or fourth time someone shares something it certainly doesn’t come across like the first time. This is when we get accused of being disrespectful. (more…)