It’s startling to realize as your elderly family member’s health declines that you’re at the end of your time as a caregiver. This can cause you to go through a range of different emotions and feel uncertain about what to do. Paying attention to how your life is changing can help you quite a bit.
Look at How You’re Spending Time Now
Your time as a caregiver is fairly spoken for, which can be part of the difficulty of being a caregiver. You likely have a structure and a schedule that help you to stay on target. But as your elderly family member nears the end of her life, your time may not be as structured as it has been. You’ll need to find new ways to spend your time that are fulfilling for you.
Incorporate Other Activities You Enjoy
Make a list of activities that you enjoy or that you wish that you could do more often. You might start small with reading a book or taking the time to work on a craft that you like. As you become braver, you might start incorporating a class or a series of lessons. Even volunteering with a cause you care about can help.
Lean on What You’ve Learned and the People Who Can Help
As a caregiver, you’ve learned an awful lot about how to help others. Use some of those lessons to give yourself a matrix for dealing with your situation. Keep in mind also that you’ve got people that you can lean on, such as palliative care providers, who can step in when you’re physically or emotionally tapped out.
Take Care of Yourself
All throughout your caregiving journey, you’ve probably learned to take better care of yourself. Those lessons especially come into play now. Double check that you’re eating properly, that you’re getting enough sleep, and that you’re showering regularly. If you’re not doing these things, they can be a signal that you’re not dealing with this situation as well as you think you are.
Adjusting to any new situation takes a little bit of time so don’t be too rough on yourself. Your whole family will be looking for support that you can provide.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering palliative care in Easton, PA, please contact the caring staff at Serenity Hospice today. Call (215) 867-5405.