This is the year of caregivers and balance! We want you alive, healthy, and well! You made it another year! Thank God!
Happy Holidays to all caregivers worldwide! The world needs and loves you!
Although national handwashing week has passed, it is very important that handwashing takes priority in caregiving.
This is especially true if you are caring for anyone ill or who is suffering from a disease. Handwashing not only protects you, it protects the person you are caring too. We come in contact with so many germs unseen, it is amazing how our immune systems are able to fight them off. In fact, it is probably a good thing we are unable to see them with the naked eye. For most of us, we know that we should wash hands constantly, when entering a room, leaving a room, and procedures, cooking, handling briefs, and even proper coughing, when is not in the hands! Handwashing keeps you from transmitting unnecessary illnesses to you and your family. Caregivers, let take care of ourselves as we care for others. Then and only then can we live a life of health, giving, and wellness to make a difference!
Memory loss. It is feared. As you age, your memories for long-term become more vivid. We want to hold on to our brain. My mother who has dementia can remember everything from years past. Research reveals that increased stress or overload processing of our brain can breed memory loss. We are often trying to multi-task if there is such a thing. It’s called doing so much at one time, busy work, rushing and going from challenge to challenge. I have days when I want to literally scream because everything and everybody is pulling on me. Needless to say, it’s a part of caregiving, knowing with to stop, and when to say “no.” It is important for us to understand normal for abnormal memory loss, short-term, and immediate recall of things. Too much stress makes us go blank, and short-term suffers.
I am not sure about the long-term damages, but I would bet over time there would be some effect on brain health. Take care of your memory by decreasing your stress today!!!
Sleep. You must have it. At least 5 to 7 hours a night. You really need more. This is a time when your body rejuvenates, heals, and restores problem areas within. If you don’t get your sleep as a caregiver, you could easy pass out, feel lightheaded, and experience unnecessary agitation. Sleep is important, but many caregivers are simply sleep deprived. We get up and down with our loved ones, we sleep lightly and are easily awaken with the least of noise. Personally, I don’t sleep as sound as I used to since caring for mom. I can hear her when she goes to the bathroom, coughs, or talks in her sleep. I can tell a difference when I am rested or not! Sleep helps us all to function and go forward another day! Get your sleep, please!
Resource Tip of the Week:
As a family caregiver, you must think in terms of “teams.” Since we are all so busy, you must have no less than 3 to five people you can count to help in time of need. These persons may be trusted neighbors, relatives, friends, and even extended/ blended family members. I believe that putting good seed in the ground will yield good results. Make sure that these persons are legit in all areas. You even need to do background checks on your family in many cases. Either way, don’t do it all alone. In my case, if I have to pay for service, here or there short-term, its worth the help.
Forget the turkey, dressing, macaroni and cheese, sweet potato pies, turnip greens, rolls, corn and more! Well, not so fast Clarissa! Happy Thanksgiving to all family caregivers across and around the world! There would literally be no world without us, and we know it. Today is my birthday. My mother Lois, who has dementia has relocated to be with my brother Clarence. I just needed some rest, so that is my birthday present! Please take time out to thank a caregiver today. We can show them that we thank them by giving them respite! Rest, relaxation, time off, and just “me” time. Show love. It’s more powerful than mere talk.
I had a chance to schedule local TV for caregiving month. It was awesome. I appeared on ABC3340 to discuss the release of my book: “Caution: Don’t Throw Away Your Aging Parents.” It is so exciting to talk about what I love. If you want a copy for yourself, check out this website under the “Store” tab. Every day is a real challenge when caring for others. You have to just know that everything will be alright. God will never leave or forsake you.
So you are a family caregiver? Join millions of us this month in appreciating those who selfishly give so much of themselves. Family caregivers know that there is a real blessing in taking care of those we love. Here are four tips for the month as we celebrate National Family Caregivers Month in November:
1. Go love yourself
2. Go plan your day before it begins
3. Be patient with yourself and others
4. Know that you are created to do just that, give the best care possible