Family caregivers can quickly feel they are sinking beneath the ever-growing demands of caregiving. It’s a disheartening feeling to say the least. Even when you enjoy caregiving and it’s something you always wanted to do, the rigors of the role can be weighty. You need some time for yourself and your needs. Hiring an elderly care provider to take care of your loved ones a few days a week can really lighten the weight you are carrying.
Elder care services can provide:
- Transportation for your loved one to go grocery shopping, go to doctor appointments, and attend senior activities
- Help with light housekeeping and preparing meals
- Reminders to take their medicine on schedule
- Encouragement to participate in regular physical activity
- Companionship and friendship
When you think about it, having a reliable service to give your loved one quality expert care on some days helps you to not worry about them when you take a few days off. The demands on your time while you’re caregiving can be varied and complicated. Some caregivers have other family members still living at home, or they have grandkids they are tending during the day. They may have full-time careers or part time jobs.
You probably fit somewhere on the spectrum.
Other demands on your time can include personal time for yourself and your interests, your family and social life, and some time off for a vacation. Caregiving an elderly loved one increases in demands as time goes by and your loved one needs more help. You will have to plan ahead for this reality.
Putting balance in your life:
Balancing your life begins by being aware of all the things you want and need to accomplish. Instead of trying to make it work on a daily scale, start bigger like on a monthly scale. It will help you see the bigger picture. On a monthly calendar sheet, fill in the days when you will be caregiving. Write in the time schedule for caregiving on those days. Fill in important family events such as someone’s birthday party, someone’s football game etc. Next, put in some exercise time and some relaxation time. From your to-do list, fill in other items you need to accomplish.
Don’t make your schedule so full that it plans every single minute of your day – it will drive you crazy if you do. Just make sure the important things were put on there and pencil in some of the other things; you can be flexible with those. Remember that some things may change. You may be sick on one day or there may be an unexpected emergency on another day. Having some flexibility is what will make the plan come together.