I knew today should have been a day that I stayed home and stayed in the bed and slept, because the night before I didn’t get much sleep. But I plowed my way through to work, only to sleep the majority of the day away.
I called the social worker at the nursing home to see if I could get any update regarding the release date for my mother to come home. I started to feel like I was being put off as I called more than once and left messages, but toward the end of my work day, I got a response: a date has been set, and it looks like my mother will be coming home within the week. I was soooooo happy to hear those words, while at the same time too tired to fully react to the news. What came to mind was this thought: the real work is about to begin.
Earlier in the day I called and spoke to a director of an adult day care center not far from where I live. A friend highly recommended it as she takes her sister (who has dementia) there. I had an informative and pleasant conversation with the director, and made an appointment to take a tour later in the week. Another friend gave me phone numbers of aides that I could interview who do home care. Much work to be done within a week.
“Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19
So what are the new things? To caregivers everywhere know this:
- As caregivers we are so close to those we care for that we are immersed emotionally, and oftentimes act and react based on that emotion. When this happens, the sleep doesn’t come, because we are full of worry. That inner turmoil takes a chokehold deep within to the point we can’t make effective decisions for our loved ones and ourselves. We should instead act on what we know. Be in the situation while at the same time not letting the situation get a hold of you. I admit this is easier said than done, and I’m learning this and the next point, which is
- Take everything a step at a time, a day at a time, and one goal at a time. Being a caregiver does not mean everything has to be rushed: rushing to make a decision that others want you to make quickly. There is nothing wrong with taking the time to think about what you are doing before doing it, one way or another. And let us not forget
- You are the caregiver, not the social worker, not the family member that is not involved, not the medical staff that verbally gives a diagnosis (not in writing), but you. Purpose to make the best decisions that you and your loved one can live with.