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Caregiver Children

A Guide to Posting in Your SparkTeam Forum

  FORUM:   Introduce Yourself to Team Forum
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SHELTER_PETS
SHELTER_PETS's Photo SparkPoints: (3,842)
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4/6/14 7:27 A

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Hi,

My name is Callie and I have 50 lbs to lose. I am off to a great start with SP.

I like the official SP challenges. SP Official Healthy Cooking Challenge and SP Official 'Eat Up, Slim Down' Challenge

Making changes;-)

1. Planning meals now
2. Drinking 2.2 L of H2O per day
3. Keeping fruit in bowls throughout my house
Lastly, Tracking my food calories with (wow....lots of work there, but gotta do it!) week one of SP Official 'Eat Up, Slim Down' Challenge

I help take care of my parents. I take them to dr. appointments and grocery shopping, and help with their housework. Trying to help them keep their dignity even though they both can't drive anymore.

No one ever tells you how hard that is;-( I remember when my grandparents were told not to drive anymore, but this is so much harder....

Edited by: SHELTER_PETS at: 4/6/2014 (14:04)
Join a SP Challenge today!
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/challeng
e.asp



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NDTEACHER1
NDTEACHER1's Photo Posts: 2,621
7/7/13 10:37 P

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Welome to this team. Sorry I didn't notice your post until now. I am in MN helping with my young grandkids and spending a birthday celebration with my soon to be 3 year old granddaughter. I know it takes a toll and you are free to vent or whatever you need to do for support. My dad will be 91 in less than a month and my mom is 84. They live in their own home but it is harder for my dad to get around with a bad hip, but still fixes small engines and drives, mom cooks, cleans, hangs clothes on the line as she did in her youth. I have a son with a disability, lives in low income housing and is doing fine now but always wait for the other shoe to fall as he suffers from clinical depression and anxiety. Take care and welcome~


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MACANBEFIT
MACANBEFIT's Photo SparkPoints: (123,457)
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7/2/13 5:23 P

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Hi! I'm new to the team but not to being a caregiver for aging mothers. Our parents followed us to NC after we moved here 20+ years ago from NJ. My father had died when I was young so I have been the emotional support for my mother for most of my life. I have two older brothers but they moved to opposite ends of the US as soon as they were old enough. My in-laws also moved here after us. My f-i-l was stricken with MS and died about 10 years ago. My m-i-l no longer drives.
While the mothers don't live with us and for the most part are independent, I am the one who takes care of them. My mother wants me to take her to the doctor's all the time - she is just being needy. My mother-in-law needs me to take her where ever she needs to go because she can no longer drive. At close to 85, she also has trouble getting around stores, so I do most of her shopping.
I'm not complaining about the role I play in my family. I agreed a long time ago to be the caregiver, first to my children, then to my parents. It's just that sometimes the mothers came be a royal pain in the .... and it is nice to have somewhere to vent.

"Good things come to those who believe. Better things come to those who wait. And the BEST things come to those who don't give up." - anonymous

I've been smoke-free since 5/7/2009


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SANDYKMAC
SANDYKMAC's Photo SparkPoints: (43,772)
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1/27/13 12:01 P

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Nank, welcome to the group. As you've probably guessed, it's not easy to take time away from the caregiving to post. I've been very frustrated with my mother. She had knee replacement surgery in December 2011 and was in a nursing home for rehab therapy. That establishment didn't start therapy for 3 weeks. She was discharged, we visited the doctor, she had scar tissue removed twice, and she was doing pretty good. The doctor showed me a move to use on her knees and she finally improved enough that her next appointment will be in May. Then she started slacking off and she is at the point where she can't walk anywhere. I was off work a week ago and it looked like the right side of her face was drooping. We took her to the hospital and she had a small stroke. Now she's back in a different nursing home for rehab for her legs. It turns out that her calves were so tight, she couldn't stand straight. This facility started therapy the first day, so hopefully it will help.
At one point a couple of months ago, my mother told me that the back of her thighs hurt after a particularly strenuous day. She had given her legs a pretty good workout. I told her so and she told me she was scared. She got mad at me because I told her it was because she had used her muscles. I guess she must have really quit doing anything. Then she seems to be scared that my sister and I are going to permanently put her in a home. Frustrating.

Edited by: SANDYKMAC at: 1/27/2013 (12:05)
Sandy from Texas(Dallas)
Plant zone: 8
Desert latitude/statewide drought
New stats:

01/01/14: 168

Blood Pressure Readings:

12/31/13:
152/83


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NANK22
NANK22's Photo Posts: 146
1/20/13 2:26 P

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Hi folks!
New to the team but not to cargiving. Here with 87 year old Dad today. Got a little frustrated with him, so I came here. After reading some of your posts tho, I am going to go count my blessings.
God bless you
Nancy

Nank22


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ROZIGNAL
ROZIGNAL's Photo Posts: 757
1/3/13 1:24 P

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I can relate to you Limdur. My mom is 66 and has had two strokes. She lives an hour drive away with my step-dad. The weekend before Christmas we thought she was having a 3rd stroke but it turned out to be convulsions from UTI. She is doing better now. When I went to visit her last week, I stayed a while and played board games with her while my step-dad ran some errands. It made it much easier playing games than having her talk about family members who are not coming to visit or who plan activities she can't attend. My MIL is 80 yrs old and lives alone 45 min away. My husband goes down to visit her once a week and helps her with grocery shopping or snow removal. I also stop there on the way to visit my mom and have coffee with her or get her shopping list. Both moms have trouble walking very far. I can't tell you how many times we have gone to a store only to find all the motorized carts being used. You are a good daughter for taking care of your mom. Perhaps there is a senior center near you that your mom can visit once a week. The one in our town serves lunch and they play cards there. I will keep you in my thoughts! Roz


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LIMDUR
LIMDUR's Photo Posts: 40
12/19/12 12:21 A

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Hi, I found this group after someone suggested that I should look for a caregiver group here on Sparkpeople after reading a blog of mine.
I'm 24 and the main person looking after my mom, who is 62. Since the beginning of October of this year, she has had issues with vertigo. We've tried a few things to try to get rid of the vertigo, as the hospital that she was at for a few days didn't really do much other than say that she needed physical therapy. However, my mom refused to go back to the hospital as they told her that her inability to stand up and walk anywhere was simply a "quality of life issue" and it didn't concern them any further. We then got to see her normal doctor, and he noticed fluid in her ears, and said that it is most likely caused by an infection, which she is now on a second round of antibiotics for. Currently, there isn't much improvement, and I need her to schedule herself an appointment with the Ears, Nose and Throat department so that we can maybe see if they can find anything because she is really not able to do much. She can do the dishes, but slowly. No sudden movements, she has to shuffle along and if we go shopping, she needs a cart to hold on to or she is in danger of falling over. Sometimes I need to hold her hand to help her cross the street. We share the responsibility for making meals for the family (there are four of us in total). She mainly stays downstairs in the recliner watching television all day now. She used to go outside and tend her flowers, do some yard work, we'd go on the occasional walk together and she would use the exercise bike twice daily. Completely different now. There are days when she can't even look at a computer screen because it makes her dizzy.
This isn't the first time that I've taken care of my mother. I've always been the one to take care of her when something was seriously wrong. When I was 11 and my mom had a nosebleed that just kept going for a couple of days, I took care of her as my older sister was too grossed out by the blood. Last year, after Mom was hospitalized for a while due to a blood infection, I was the one to flush the PIC line, administer the medicine, and give her her insulin injections as well. Neither my mother or I can rely on my older sister or my father to help out, so I'm doing this pretty much on my own.
I was handling it okay, for a while, but recently I've been feeling really worn down and feeling a little resentful at times and I know that that isn't fair. My mother has always been there for me, including when I lived three hours away during college and if something happened, she got in the car and headed my way, even when it was one o'clock in the morning. I want to help my mom get better, I want to do these things for her. But there are the days when sometimes I get tired of fighting with her on things, like trying to get her to make those telephone calls to get appointments because she thinks that nothing will come of it. I get overwhelmed on the days that she is understandably depressed about how her life is right now, because I don't know how to help her. The only thing I can think of is "I know, but we'll figure something out." My biggest fear is that we won't figure something out, and this will be the rest of my mother's life, and that... I can't think of that.
I guess I've just realized that I really need to be able to talk to people who know what I'm going through, and to help me realize that I need to keep taking care of myself while I'm focusing on my mom.


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COLIBRI1
COLIBRI1's Photo SparkPoints: (12,823)
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10/11/12 6:01 A

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Hi - I'm so glad to find this group!
I'm 50, RN, graduate student, wife, mother, grandmother - info about me is on my SparkPage. What it doesn't say there is that I am also an only child, and we leave with my mother, who is 77 and struggling with dementia. I'm not sure it's Alzheimer, not that it matters so much... but dementia it is. My MIL also leaves nearby, she's 84 and gets more frail every day, though cognitively she's very lucid.
So that's my intro... I'll write more later.
Thank you all for being here!



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DIHEALTHYHAPPY
DIHEALTHYHAPPY's Photo Posts: 4,324
8/6/12 11:20 A

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Hi, I'm Diane and I take care of my 87 year old dad who is in stage 6 and 7 Alzheimers. I am so happy to have found this team. It's easy to intellectualize what is going on with my dad but emotionally, I struggle at times and medicate with food! I'm determined to get the weight off again - I lost 135 pounds and have regained 20 - and keep it off this time!

La Grange, Kentucky
Diane

Upcoming races:


3/23/14 Tri for the Cure with daughter
4/26/14 Pat's Run North Carolina
12/14/14 Jeff Galloway 13.1



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SCARLETTHEATHER
SCARLETTHEATHER's Photo Posts: 968
7/26/12 8:24 A

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Welcome, Lisa. Sounds like you've got a LOT going on. Love your positive outlook, though. You're in the right place, there are lots of supportive people here!

Heather
Southern Illinois


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LISAWYMAN
SparkPoints: (375)
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7/25/12 7:47 P

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Hi Everyone, My name is Lisa. I am 47 years old and I am an RN. That comes in handy as I am taking care of both my parents. We moved into a home with an inlaw apt. for them a few years ago knowing that they were going to need a little extra support soon but we had no idea how much or how soon. A few days before christmas last year my mom had emergency bypass surgery that was successful but unfortunately lead to a catostrophic stroke that caused her to be aphasic, apraxic, and lose control of her right side. For those of you unfamiliar with the medical terms I will just say she has taken quite a wallop! My mom is also a nurse and some years ago now we worked together in a nursing facility. I made a promise to her then that I would never allow her to go to such a place as long as I was able to care for her and I aim to keep that promise. She is total care but we figured that between dad and I we could handle it. Mom was in the hospital/rehab for almost 3 months. Shortly after her return home my dad suffered a heart attack, not his first. He had an emergency procedure to place 3 cardiac stents for a total of 11. Simply put, thats alot. Needless to say I have to pick up the slack with moms care but thats ok, I am very blessed to still have them both with me. My son was recently married and there is a lot of talk about grandchildren. I am beyond excited about this but am worried that in my own current state of health (and lousy genetics) that I will not be able or even be around to enjoy this time of my life. I have joined this site because I know I need the support and I won't find it at home, I need to be reminded from time to time not to forget to take care of myself as well (we caregivers are not very good at that) and I needed a group that understands the particular challenges that we in the "sandwich generation" face. I look forward to losing weight with you all!



TIGGERPH
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6/29/12 12:58 A

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Hi, I'm Perry. I switched to part-time telecommuting work several years ago to move home with my parents then 82 and 89. My dad had an accident the day I moved back and died 5 days later. Mom and I have lived together since and been doing quite well. In the last 2 years she has had more short term memory issues but she has been determined to be as positive as possible and do everything she could. She's 89 now. Tuesday she was diagnosed with metastasized cancer that is not treatable and I've been told that she has somewhere between 8 weeks and 6 months. I've got some support from my brothers - 2 local, 1 out of state - and their families. I'm trying to work with Mom's friends and the extended family so that people can say goodbye. Mom is grounded and "ready" and was a hospice volunteer herself so she knows the drill. I'm just not always sure that she remembers that she's dying.

I'm okay, except for when I'm not. I'm fine during the day but after she goes to bed at night my brain goes hamster on a wheel thinking about what ifs that I know are just going to have to be handled when and if they occur, how I'm going to deal with my brothers through the next few months and probating the will and who I'm going to be after mom dies. Tonight I burned some of that off on the elliptical, but ended up watching TV and eating peanut butter and honey on toast.


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CGULSBY359
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5/14/12 10:00 A

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HI All! I'm Chris - and while I guess the focus of this group is children taking care of their parents, being a grandchild taking care of her grandmother, I kinda feel like I belong here because you all understand what's going on.

Until last month, my grandma was independent and capable and full of life. Then on April 19th she fell while doing yardwork and broke her hip. She was doing really well after the surgery and in the rehabilitation hospital so they released her to come home on May 5th. However, I'm afraid that she's declining since she's gotten home because I don't think she's doing the therapy stuff she should be doing.

I work full-time and have had to completely juggle my work schedule to address the needs of taking care of her. So days that used to start at 6am are now starting at 5 am so I can get up, get myself ready, feed the pets, get gram up and dressed and fed and moving for the day.

If any of you have a good system for juggling it all, I'm all ears.


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PATTYMM
Posts: 8
2/29/12 10:59 P

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Hello, I'm taking care of my 90yr old mother. We've been helping for years but she has failed considerably for the last two. She can't be alone now bcs of her memory loss/confusion (undiagnosed, Alzheimer's?).

Scheduling her kids to visit and spend nights left too many gaps to be a long term solution. My husband and 2 daughters (in college now) and I set up a bedroom for Mom brought her over for a couple trial runs. Not great. She couldn't function as independently as she did at her home at the time and needed help with her usual morning routines. Now getting help is the routine.

She still lives at home and we have paid help 5 days a week and the kids cover the rest of the time. I feel like the more we've done things for her, the less confident she has become and the more help she takes. If we encouraged her more to do things for herself would she have lost so much? She gets so afraid to make a mistake that she won't try. She gets upset that she can't remember. She wants someone to tell her what to do, to choose for her except when it's not something she wants.

I miss my mom. I love her and want to help her. I have to accept that I am not the help she wants or needs all the time. I am not able to make things right for her and I can't be with her all the time. I'm doing my best and I have to accept that it's not enough. In order to take care of her, I still have to learn how to take care of myself. Or maybe I know enough and am in the process of putting it all into practice.


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SHOEGIRL140
SparkPoints: (2,495)
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1/7/12 10:02 A

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Hi I am 51 and taking care of my father who is 91. He has mulitple problems. Major risk is falling. He fell before Christmas and ended up in the hospital. I had to make some major care changes for him and he is not happy. Will write more about that later.

I love to knit and read. Also love to be outside in the winter, but too tied down with Dad right now for that.

My mother passed away four years ago, had Alzheimers but her heart gave out. I took care of her for 7 years and now its just Dad and me.

Have a hard time dealing with the stress. I live with Dad and am trying to continue to work part-time.

Feel really alone and isolated on the weekends. Coming here to the boards may help me. I have to keep reminding myself that I am not the only person dealing with this.
I have tried support group but its always women taking care of their husbands, never children taking care of parent..

Looking forward to being a part of this group.

Blessings!

NAKEVA "It's not what you think it is"


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IDYLATOO
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7/27/11 10:45 A

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Hi! I'm 29 and I've been taking care of my mom for about a year and a half now. She had brain surgery to investigate an odd area that had been increasing in size and they discovered it was a malignant tumor in December 2009 (glioblastoma multiforme). I've been neglecting myself - mostly without even realizing it - and I'm trying to balance doing more things for myself while continuing to watch over her.


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ALMMOM
ALMMOM's Photo Posts: 422
7/20/11 11:33 A

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I have an 81 year old mom diagnosed with dementia/alz. I had been going to her home two r three times a week for a while since she lost her driver's license. On advice of her doctor she was no longer able to live alone. Last Thanksgiving she was put into an assisted living facility in a secured area for demential/alz. It has been an ordeal - she is very negative and angry and wants to "go home". I read recently that going home meant (many times) going back to functioning like one did before!!

I no longer care for her on a daily basis, but I'm the only child close in proximity to her and see her 2 or 3 times a week.

I have her pets at my house. I do take her dog to her weekly. She perks up when she sees it.

It is difficult dealing with the anger and lashing out part. My daughter has downs syndrome and was always close to my mom. She doesn't want to see mom because of the lashing out and anger issues. I know in my head that these issues are a part of the illness - it is still hard to deal with at the time I'm there!!!




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NDTEACHER1
NDTEACHER1's Photo Posts: 2,621
7/11/11 9:40 P

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Hi,

I do believe God has plans for us. He has a reason for you caring for your father. It absolutely cannot be easy. I can't imagine having to care for someone who was not a good father. My dad has his faults, but over all I feel he loves me. You don't have to put on a brave face for people. If you are struggling or sad, you should be able to share that will church members whom are supposed to provide fellowship. I know this isn't great advice and probably not even the right thing to say, I was just struck by the pain in your message. Take care.


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NDTEACHER1
NDTEACHER1's Photo Posts: 2,621
7/11/11 9:34 P

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Hi Zelma,

Your story really got to me in fact I couldn't even finish reading it. It reminded me of why I became a special ed. teacher, you want more for him and you feel he could do more, that is understandable and reasonable. Talk to an advocate, but make sure they are either not vigilante, trying to string up the teacher type personality, or two-faced, they act like they are advocating for the child to you, but when they get into a situation where they need to help you, they back peddle. I don't mean to discourage you, but tell you up front what is out there, too. I've seen these type of advocates in more than one school district. I worked with a student who was a teenager when I got him/her, also did not speak but after I had him/her for a couple years, was beginning to speak and could be in public without turning the store upside down as before. Hang in there and keep on wanting what is best for him.


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NDTEACHER1
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7/11/11 9:26 P

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Hi everyone,

This sure is a big team, lots of 'sandwich generation' people here, hope it's not too big that you get lost in the shuffle. I am technically not providing a lot of care for my parents, yet, or maybe never will unless it comes to doing the dirty work or the things two of my siblings decide they will allow me to do. I hope I don't sound bitter it's just weird how weird siblings can get when parents age.

My brother, who had autism, got unexpectedly ill and passed away two years ago. It was devastating, how he suffered, how it aged my parents, the fear of losing them right on the heels of my brother's death. I took it hard, can still cry at the drop of a hat. He and I were a year and a half apart. He was older, but I took on the role of the protector. People can be cruel, I am on a mission to eradicate the work RETARD because of it's hateful and hurtful connotations.

My parents are 82 and 89, my mother still hangs out clothes on the line, washing clothes and bedding every week, making meals, everything much younger women do, but she has fallen at least 3 times in the past year, luckily not breaking any bones. My dad is going to be 89 the 2nd of August and still fixes small engines, working on tillers, lawnmowers, and snowblowers.

This past year, he has slowed up, because he has no cartilage in his hip, so he can't walk downtown to get the mail and can't use the push lawnmower. I believe he could have survived surgery last year, because he was strong, but after a year of being less active, because two of my siblings decided for him he was not going to have surgery and paid for him to have injections of fish oil, vitamins, etc. in the hip area. The doctor/witch doctor is 500 miles away. His last visit, which I drove him to the doctor gave him about 70 injections. Needless to say, its not helping, but if he has a day that he feels better my siblings and mom think its working. Am I dumb or what? I don't think this cartilage is coming back, you could inject M & M's into his hip and it would have the same effect. Dad said the doctor can feel the tissue is growing by feeling his hip, doesn't that sound scientific?

My siblings are smart, but how can they be so blind. I know they think they are doing the right thing, but I'm upset. I would let my mom and dad live with them because I like being around them. My sister is caring, but she is particular and picky, I know she would lose patience. My brother acts like he knows more than anyone else, filling my dad with 55 of his herbal and organic meds, which can be dangerous, too, but we don't talk about it.

Any time the situation gets tough my brother can't handle it. He lived in another state but was executor for my brother, which was stupid. I didn't care about the money end of it, he could have done that but he wasn't here to make decisions and my mom thought only he was smart enough to do so.

When he came back he spent 5 minutes with my brother while I tried to visit every day even though his death was agonizing. He went from 200 lbs. to less than 90 when he died, couldn't walk, use his hands feed himself or talk and when he was well he did everything for himself, ran his own business, walked to work, paid his bills, made meals.

I thought I'd die when he died. He was my inspiration to become a special ed. teacher. The Bible and GOD got me through it. I know what awaits so maybe I can get some ideas from people going through this with moms and dads, unless like I said earlier, I get to do the dirty work, and not be involved in any decisions. I don't have much to do with these two siblings because they have been either outright nasty and hateful or mutter under their breath when I speak of laugh. I don't get it, we lost one brother and then they act that way when life is so precarious, not to just love each other. Oh, well what can you do but pray and hold your tongue.


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DENISE223
DENISE223's Photo SparkPoints: (34,252)
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5/14/11 12:06 P

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Hi Everyone:

My name is Denise and I've been a member of this team for awhile, but this is my first introduction.

ANGORA4 emoticon Thank you for coming by my page and commenting on my Northern Cardinal blog. It's because of you that I decided to come here today.

My mother is 78.5 years old and has multiple health issues - heart problems, diabetes, etc.. She used to live in elderly housing by herself, but over the past few years has suffered many falls which have necessitated hospitalization.

She had a stroke this past February while in rehab, and is currently in a long term care facility - or, nursing home. My husband and I saw her within 1.5 hours of her stroke, and she was moving her right side, and also talking. The "clot buster" tPA did its job, but unfortunately, she lost a chunk of her memory emoticon Her memory deficit wasn't something we noticed right away, but it was apparent soon after. She is aware that she has lost some of her memory.
She has hit her had several times with her falls, so we think that she has suffered many concussions which have also affected her memory. I'm not sure if she is headed for Alzheimer's?

I received a call very early Thursday morning informing me that she was being sent to the emergency room. She was admitted for congestive heart failure, which she has had several hospitalizations for. She has improved and might be headed back to the nursing home today or tomorrow. She doesn't get along with her roommate and wants another room.
It's very difficult to hear, "I want to go home". I try to explain that she requires a lot of help, and she said that she does understand.

Since January, 2011, my mom has either been in the hospital, spent a week in the ICU very critically ill with "high powered oxygen", or in rehab. She has been in the nursing home since March 9th. She had a pacemaker inserted during this time.
She cannot ambulate unless someone is with her, and also uses a walker. She has PT 5 times per week, for right now. They have an alarm on her bed & wheelchair, in case she gets up on her own (which she always does).

Sorry if this all sounds scattered, it's even hard for me to keep track.

I'm not sure that this nursing home is the place for her. Initially my husband and I thought it was a good fit because it was one of the ?8 places that were recommended (on a list of 120 nursing homes), AND known to have a good rehab program.
I am going to check into another one in the same town that I heard was good, and most of the staff has been there for years.

It would be nice if I could take her out and go to lunch, etc..., but it would be difficult to get her in and out of the car. And, when she needs to go to the bathroom, she needs to get there within a couple of minutes. I have many upper extremity issues with both shoulders and hands which limit things I can do.

I'm very glad that this team is here.

Much peace, love & happiness to all of you,

Denise


"He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~~Immanuel Kant~~

~"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter"~
www.pet-abuse.com/

IFAW saves animals:
www.ifaw.org/us/



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FRISKYGRANDMA
FRISKYGRANDMA's Photo Posts: 17
4/29/11 12:19 P

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Hi all

I am 49, single and the full time caregiver for my father who is 82 and contends with many issues as a result of aging. I was employed but my position was eliminated 7 months ago. I moved in with Dad since we needed each other. I needed to curb my expenses and he did not want to hire a stranger to take care of him.

On the surface it sounded like a great idea but in all practicallity..not so much. I must admit that I have come to realize that I truly am my father's daughter and as such we butt heads CONSTANTLY!

I can't tell you how many times he has said "This is MY house" and I have responded "That's true but you need me to LIVE in it." The sad part is we really do love each other but we are are both dealing with issues of feeling trapped. Him in his body and me in my circumstances.

I am hoping that in joining your team I will be able to share what I have learned and in turn learn from the rest of you as well.

Blessings to all
Ari

God is big and God can do anything! I'm living proof!!! :)


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LADYZH
LADYZH's Photo SparkPoints: (12,592)
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4/12/11 3:48 P

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Hello, Everyone. My name is Zelma and I am the caregiver/legal guardian for my 6 yr old grandson that has Cerebral Palsy with seizures. Thankfully he has a nurse that comes just after he gets out of school to watch him while I continue to go to work. He is the love of my life and I can't imagine not having him in my life, so I am trying to do all that I can for him and I only want the best. Lately, every doctor or therapist has been patronizing to the point that "they have done all that they can for him", even though they have done absolutely nothing. He doesn't walk or talk and we just received a stander for him. The therapists recently cancelled his therapy in lieu of training his teachers how to use the stander. They are only offering him therapy one day a week, and chose that day to do training without rescheduling his therapy, and are unwilling to offer him more than just one day a week for one hour (30 mins=ot, 30 mins=pt). I know that most on this site is dealing with their parents, but it is still frustrating. I feel that I have to do everyone's job in order just to get him what he needs. He is on the verge of having to have hip surgery because his sockets are popping because he doesn't bear weight, but the doctor is only interested in doing the surgery, but not in helping to make sure that the therapy is in place for his after care. I am currently looking at Shriner's Hospital in Sacramento, CA, to see if they can give a second opinion to what the best course of action should be. I am looking forward to getting ideas on how others are coping and resolving some issues. May GOD continue to bless us all and keep us safe as we are a unique group of special people!emoticon

It is best to trust GOD than to put confidence in Man. PS:118:8 (KJV)
____________________________________
"To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist." President Barack Obama


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LEAPINGLIZARDS
LEAPINGLIZARDS's Photo Posts: 896
4/5/11 11:51 P

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Hi everyone! My name is Charly and my husband and i are caregivers to his dad, who is a maximum assist Parkinson's patient, and my dad, who was recently diagnosed with melanoma with metastases to the brain, bone, and several other places. He can't stand up for more than about 2 seconds. We aren't new to caregiving, as we also took care of my mom, who died of brain cancer in 1995. i have no siblings to share the load as my only brother was killed in a car accident. My husband has one brother and one sister, who both live out of state. Anyway, here i am - tired, frustrated, and at times desperate (i'm sure you all can relate) but trying very hard to stay positive! Looking forward to getting to know you.emoticon

Department of Redundancy Department


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CHRISTURTLE
CHRISTURTLE's Photo SparkPoints: (17,654)
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4/4/11 5:43 P

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Hi, I'm Chris, live in country Victoria, Australia and I just finished huddling with my teams when i noticed this team as one of the featured teams up there on my screen. Instantly, without warning, my eyes filled with tears - I know a lot of fellow Sparkers care for their parents, but never for a moment dreamed there was a designated Spark Team for us.
I've been caring for my Dad since November 2009, after Mum passed away from cancer. He is 85 and they had done everything as a couple. Dad had been fussed over by Mum all their married life, he had never cooked anything more than toast for breakfast, a barbecue every few months over summer, and had never even written a cheque. He was totally lost. I was living and working 4 hours away, but every Friday afternoon, immediately after work, would drive down to clean his house, shop for everything to keep him going for the following week, fill the freezer with easy reheat meals, pay the bills, do the gardening... then Sunday evening I'd drive home again to be ready for work at 5am next morning. Dad has severe arthritis, needs a walker to get round, used a gopher to go any distance.
Easter 2010 I brought him here to have 2 week's holiday with me, and he went back home a completely different person. Within 2 weeks he had put the unit up for sale, and it was sold. We would do the whole weekend trip thing together to go through the house, pack what he wanted, donate what could go, and eventually it was done and the trips were at an end.
We lived in my small rented house for a few months, but there wasn't enough space for all Dad's stuff, so we ended up buying two adjoining units on a double block of land so we could live side by side and still have our own space. It was great, was working out wonderfully and Dad actually started getting to know people and become friendly with the neighbours. Unfortunately a series of strokes in December -January 09/10 left him with dementia, severe paranoia and an inability to sleep for more than an hour a night, maximum. I coped with caring for him at home, having given up my job due to arthritis in my knees, for 5 months, but my doctor was threatening to hospitalize me for exhaustion, so finally I went to Dad's doctor and told him I couldn't cope any longer. After searching half the state for a dementia specific secure nursing home vacancy for him a miracle happened and he was given a place in the wonderful nursing home here in town.
Life goes on, his health has continued to deteriorate, and the dementia has become more severe, to the point where he now doesn't know who I am. I have been to see him every day for at least 2 hours, even though I sit beside him without any acknowledgement of my presence. That's ok, he would do the same for me, but my health has started to deteriorate, to the point where I was told by the manager of the nursing home that I need to stop coming in each day because I am starting to look like a candidate for a nursing home myself. Dad has no concept of time, of who I am, he smiles and will say a word or two to the staff at the home, but I don't exist to him any longer.
I feel relieved to be released from the need to be with him each day, know that he doesn't realize if I'm there or not, doesn't even know who I am, and agreed with the manager (who is an absolute angel, so very understanding and compassionate) that my health is deteriorating due to stress and the resulting lack of sleep. I feel happy about having each second day to myself to not live to a timetable, but still there is that terrible feeling of guilt, that I am the only one who visits, other than the occasional visits from two of my three daughters who both have their own commitments elsewhere. My sister never went to see Dad when he was living in the unit where he and Mum had lived for so long, even though she was 10 minutes away. She came to see him once, for 30 minutes, and left, promising to return. She never did, never calls, and blames me for Dad's deterioration in health, and has turned family against me saying I only brought him up here so I could benefit from his money, and so on.
I know the things she says are so far from true as to be ridiculous, but I have had relatives call and abuse me because they have heard 'the truth' from my sister, and it really hurts. Dad and I have always been close, right from when I was a little girl, helping him in the garden, or working in his shed, and it breaks my heart to see him this way. I am also feeling guilt at not being there each day with him, even though I know it makes no difference to him.
Right now, to have been unable to unburden myself here, in this super long introduction which I meant to only be brief, has brought on tears, and left me feeling totally drained of all emotion. By joining this team and having this reaction, I can see that I need to make an appointment to see my doctor, do something about my health, and to spend time talking with a counsellor. Already I am taking steps to deal with this situation I have been pretending for too long I am coping with. Thank you to the founder/s of this team, you have done something wonderful for me already.

Chris - Stawell, Victoria, Australia.

Leader - Sparkling Knitters team.
Co-leader - Finding & Loving Your Inner Tigger team.

Only by giving up do we lose a battle.


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HISTORYBUFF1
HISTORYBUFF1's Photo Posts: 340
3/31/11 5:56 P

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Hi:
I just joined this team. My wife and I are caregivers for our elderly Moms. Mine is 87 and had a couple of strokes in the fall of 2010. We moved in with her almost a year ago. Moved from Chicago area to the mountains of northeast California. We are also within 5 hour drive of my mother in law (San Francisco Bay Area), who has alzheimers. She lives with brother in law and his wife (a former nurse). We do "Mom sitting," when sister in law is out of town. We also counsel a 67 year old cousin who lost her Mom last June, and we're a block and a half from my brother (68), whose wife had a heart attack yesterday - lots of family needs here. Blessings, Larry - emoticon

I can be reached daily at lskendrick@frontier.com and need both encouragement to diet and exercise, & friends to help keep me sane, as we now live for the first time in a truly rural setting.


TIEGRRLIL
TIEGRRLIL's Photo Posts: 412
9/22/10 10:45 A

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glad to meet you Pauline and Wendy!

It's an attitude thing. Attitude is everything.



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WENDYSPARKS
WENDYSPARKS's Photo SparkPoints: (68,792)
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9/22/10 10:30 A

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My name is Wendy from Connecticut!! My dad will be 80 in May...Nice to meet you all!

"One step at a time"


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POLLYJEAN
POLLYJEAN's Photo Posts: 91
8/27/10 11:26 A

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Hi, my name is Pauline. I was glad to find this group and look forward to the support.
I am the caregiver to my 92 year old grandmother who now has moved into an extended care facility. On top of that I assist my father (68)and my mother-in-law (76)with their medical issues.
I still have a 14 year old daughter at home who is heaviy involved in sports (hockey, lacrosse and refereeing). And I just became a grandmother for the first time when my son and his girlfriend had their baby girl. Middle daughter (21)still lives at home and I always end up feeling guilty because I rely on her to help too much sometimes.
I will be celebrating my 25th wedding anniversary this weekend. Somedays I really miss my husband because, although we live in the same house, it feels like we hardly have time for just us. He is my best friend!
I am back on board because I realized that if I didn't start doing something for myself then I would soon not be in any shape to do what I do for the other people in my life.

PJ


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TIEGRRLIL
TIEGRRLIL's Photo Posts: 412
8/24/10 1:01 P

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Hi All

My name is Lillie, I am from Northern, CA and started Sparking yesterday. I am a caregiver to my 83 year old mom who is a multiple stroke victim. I have been caring for her 11 years. I'm a stay at home mom and daughter.

It's an attitude thing. Attitude is everything.



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SAL2525
SAL2525's Photo SparkPoints: (26,877)
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Posts: 2,252
7/16/10 8:55 A

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Hi SophieJunie and Anne
Sounds like you both have your hands full. Being the caregiver is an easy job to say the least! Welcome to you both! Sal

and BREATHE!

Sal 5% Fall Challenge Eastern Standard Time Zone


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QUEENANNE1953
QUEENANNE1953's Photo SparkPoints: (36,757)
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7/13/10 9:51 A

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Hi all

I joined this team back in Feb '10 and think I introduced myself then. Could be wrong lol.

I've been a long-distance caregiver for several years and things just were not working out with my mum. She used to live with her sister and then we had to put her in a nursing home (Oct. 2009) because it was no longer 'convenient' at her sister's home. She deteriorated rapidly for those few months at the Nursing Home. I filed her immigration papers back in October 2009 and on May 9, 2010, Mother's Day, she came to live with me (and DH) in Florida. She's 93 years old and has improved immensely. She has dementia but did not 'forget' her sense of humor.

She goes to 'mummy-day-care' while I go to work. They do arts and craft, play games, seated exercises and get manicures and pedicures,etc. It's a great place for her to be. At the end of the day she has forgotten most of the fun she had .. but that's ok .. I know she enjoyed it while it lasted.

I am happy to be on this team .. I have lots to learn. Thanks for listening. I'll be back.

Regards
Anne
emoticon

Edited by: QUEENANNE1953 at: 7/13/2010 (09:55)
This is Anne from Sunny Florida.

My mantra is ..
NO MORE EXCUSES!! LET'S JUST DO IT
***************************


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SOPHIEJUNIE
SOPHIEJUNIE's Photo Posts: 39
7/6/10 10:28 A

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Hi. I'm new to SP and new to this team. I joined because my parents are both sick -- Mom with Parkinson's and Dad with an auto-immune disorder that is not even diagnosed in the medical books! They are way too young (mid-60s) and dealing with them plus two teens at home has just about put me over the edge. Some days I'm able to be grateful for all the good in my life...some days I just want to hide. I had lost 25 pounds last summer...gained almost all of it back. That might be the most frustrating part, you know? It's bad enough to put your life on hold to care for parents who are combative, don't follow doctor's orders, put other people at risk...it's almost worse to see yourself making bad choices as a coping mechanism. Anyways...glad to be here.


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DOOBRIE
DOOBRIE's Photo Posts: 4,671
3/13/10 2:25 A

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emoticon Courti! I'm so glad you joined us.

Doobs

Doobs
England


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PATRICIA703
PATRICIA703's Photo Posts: 882
3/12/10 8:25 P

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Welcome Courti. I am caregiver to my 88 yr old mom. She lives next door. This is an excellent site to find out information and just to "talk" when you need too. Hope to see you all on here.
Patricia


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-COURT-
-COURT-'s Photo Posts: 17,777
3/12/10 6:11 P

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Hi, I'm new. I'm a caregiver for my 93-year old mom. She moved in with us last May. Things have changed since then. Even with what therapy she's had, she isn't as able as back then.

¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•`✶ ✶Courti - Florida
✔ ♪♪♪♪♪♪
BL-Winter- Pink Panther
COH - Slytherin
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maker/en/index.php?target=doll


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PATRICIA703
PATRICIA703's Photo Posts: 882
2/9/10 6:27 P

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emoticon Anne!! Good luck with the move and hope to see you around here!
Patricia


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DOOBRIE
DOOBRIE's Photo Posts: 4,671
2/9/10 4:20 P

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emoticon Anne - emoticon to the team!

Hope everything goes well with the move.

Doobs

Doobs
England


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QUEENANNE1953
QUEENANNE1953's Photo SparkPoints: (36,757)
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2/9/10 3:34 P

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Hello emoticon.. my name is Anne. I just found and joined this team. I am happy and excited to be here. I've been a member of Sparks since Aug. 2007 and post often on a private team.

I am a long distance 'caregiver' for now .. but that will be changing within the coming weeks when my 91 y.o old mum comes to live with us. I will share more with you all later ..I am just going to lurk around for a while .. if it's ok with you all.
emoticon

I just wanted to stop by and introduce myself since I see I have already been given a warm Sparkmail welcome from your leader.

Thanks for having me.

emoticon
Anne

This is Anne from Sunny Florida.

My mantra is ..
NO MORE EXCUSES!! LET'S JUST DO IT
***************************


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SPARKLES
SPARKLES's Photo SparkPoints: (141,217)
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1/26/10 12:19 P

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Welcome to the group! It is as Patricia says - vent - get support - support others when you can - get & give advice & just share day to day experiences. (See the daily check-in & other threads too :) Glad you're here, dear.
Jenn


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PATRICIA703
PATRICIA703's Photo Posts: 882
1/25/10 7:17 P

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Welcome! This is the place that you can come and vent and get advice. I know it has helped me a lot dealing with my mother. She is not always in a positive mood!
Patricia


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SDANIEL42
SDANIEL42's Photo Posts: 709
1/24/10 10:27 P

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Hi Just wanted to introduce myself. I am a caretaker to my elderly mother, who is not always nice. I also help my husband who is disabled and lives in chronic pain and I have 2 daughters as well. Also one of my daughters is ASD.

Most days I just want to grab the kids and run away and I feel really guilty about it.



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PATRICIA703
PATRICIA703's Photo Posts: 882
1/15/10 4:28 P

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emoticon Margaret and any one else i missed. This is the place to vent and say you want. It is ok to say those things. My mother has always been a negative person and somewhat grumpy at times. I am her caregiver. She lives next door to us.


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FOCUS_SUCCEED
FOCUS_SUCCEED's Photo Posts: 53
1/14/10 4:25 A

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Thanks Jennifer!

Yeah my sister isn't much help either. The whole family (aunts and uncles) has always had a "I am too busy with my own life" attitude. But my sister has many traits of borderline personality disorder, I am not sure if she has been officially diagnosed with it, but I don't feel she is capable of doing more than she is. My Pastor tells me that it is always the way, one person in a family is the "caregiver", and that is me. That is just the way it is, he tells me.

Parkinson's patients tend to do much worse in nursing home situations, they need more one on one care than a nursing home can provide. The statistics show clearly that mortality rates rise much higher for Parkinson's people in institutional care. The truth is, even if it is hard, I can do it, and so I do. I provide care and we seem to get through it all. I tell myself that it isn't about whether or not he deserves it, it is about how *I* want to live. I like living a life where no one gets left behind. God can sort out the rest.

I am in the midst of enrolling in classes part time to finish my Bachelor's. I feel it is important that I continue with my own personal goals as I care for him. It is really exciting for me to go back to school, and I think it does help put into perspective that my role as caregiver is not ALL that I am.


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SPARKLES
SPARKLES's Photo SparkPoints: (141,217)
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1/13/10 8:27 P

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Yup - You're in the right place Margaret. Ok to say whatever, here. I'm not great at advice giving & knowing what to say to people, but several people on this team ARE. But regardless, we're all in this thing together. And SEEMS like, for most of us here, we are the only family member that is pitching in to help much, if at all. I'm sorry you don't have great memories with your Dad. I think my sister could identify more with you on that particular note, but I personally give you kudo's for giving & helping him "anyway". (My sister will NOT - partly due to physical limits, but I don't think that's all it is, going by where her conversation ALWAYS goes when we're talking about him. But most of the time, I'm over it - too busy to worry about it) And again - it's ok to vent here!! Nobody will judge you. Yes - it's a hard job & can be exhausting. Feel free to come by the Daily Check-In thread too, & write when you're up to it & feel like it. We all do. Like I said, I'm not great at knowing what to say back to people, but I mean well - LOL.
And
Welcome to the team!!

Jennifer


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FOCUS_SUCCEED
FOCUS_SUCCEED's Photo Posts: 53
1/13/10 2:27 P

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Hi!

I am new to this team. My Mom passed away in May and I have been caring for my Father Since August. He is in the final stage of Parkinson's. He was in an assisted living but I moved him into an apartment next door to my home and I also moved a caregiver in next door to him on the other side. I cover 12 hours a day and she covers 12 hours a day. I have looked for a third person, but hadn't been happy with any of them, they made more work rather than making things easier. We seem to do just fine with the two of us. We have a baby monitor set up so when he is sleeping or busy on his own, we can go home and listen for him. I cover nights, so if he lets me, then I sleep. If it is a rough night I sleep in the day.

Just wondering, does anyone have issues long ago past really bothering you in the present? He wasn't much of a Father really, and here I am caring for him. Is that ok to say out loud? Does anyone else feel like that? It seems the people at Church talk about my caregiving like the expectation is that I am just so happy all the time, and he is just so sweet all the time, and well reality isn't like that. It is hard work, exhausting, and he is often grumpy. I focus on having a life of my own while doing this, I don't want to "sink" into a lifestyle where I somehow become invisible, even in my own eyes.

OK , I have to laugh because I had to edit my post in order to add MY NAME which I forgot to put in. (arg!)

Margaret

Edited by: FOCUS_SUCCEED at: 1/13/2010 (14:46)

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1HONEYBEAR
1HONEYBEAR's Photo Posts: 388
1/11/10 6:57 A

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thanks, I met w/ the visiting nurses yesterday and they will be coming during the day and then come back at bed time to get him in the bed. They also will be doing his wash and dishes. This is such a load off of my shoulders! Hopefully his in home therapy will be starting this week also. I started cleaning out some of his things on the 1st flr so he can move around easier. That took most of the day yesterday, I think I will have time to finish that tonight - that was just his dinning room. Wow - do we keep a lot of things we don't need any more or used in yrs. I still have to have his bed moved to the 1st flr.

"Dance like you no one is looking, sing like like no one is listening, and live like there is no tomorrow,"


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JGMK55
JGMK55's Photo SparkPoints: (62,979)
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1/10/10 11:23 A

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Welcome 1HONEYBEAR to the team. This is a great group for support, advice and encouragement. I'm glad you joined us.

“We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28


1HONEYBEAR
1HONEYBEAR's Photo Posts: 388
1/10/10 8:55 A

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Hi – I am new to this group. I have been taking care of my father since my mom died 2 yrs ago. He still lives in his house but it has been getting harder for him to move around. He has a degenerative bone disease. This affects he back a lot and he is having a lot of pain walking. He was hospitalized 2x since June and went to a rehab. home afterwards for a few months. He went into the hospital the other day again. Since he wasn’t sick this time too, medicade will not pay for him to go to a rehab. home. He came home last night by transport since he can’t do stairs right now. My family has to move his bed downstairs and he will be getting a visiting nurse. This is soooo stressing – how to take care of him without making him feel worse and how to go about getting him the right help.emoticon

"Dance like you no one is looking, sing like like no one is listening, and live like there is no tomorrow,"


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SPARKLES
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1/2/10 11:50 A

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Yep - I feel like I need to move to this new place my Dad is at & oversee things.


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DOOBRIE
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1/1/10 3:30 P

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Hi Jenn - yes, it was seeing that you had joined this team that reminded me I was going to join it too!

I wish I had researched the medications Mum was on - another thing to feel guilty about - but I just trusted that the medical profession knew what they were doing. Now I don't trust any of them. They had Mum on steroids for ages which was causing more problems than they were solving. Finally, they have now taken her off them. I feel I'm constantly having to watch over what they're giving her!

Doobs
England


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SPARKLES
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1/1/10 2:30 P

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Well Doobrie - looks like I beat you here - lol. I hadn't know the details of you're Mom's issues before now. It's got to be hard seeing such a drastic change as you described & I hate it that so much of it is due to the medication. Who would have known it would do all that?!

Carrieanne - I'm working with the guilt now too - afraid I've made a mistake moving my Dad etc. But what Doobs said it true - what more can we do? NO - I don't think wishing for a little me time is wrong. I can see a person losing their HEALTH over NOT having time to take care of themselves. I hear it so much it's like cliche, but we do have to take care of ourselves first. Any day now I'm going to do that, right? sigh.

Jenn


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DOOBRIE
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12/31/09 2:23 A

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I think it's only natural to sometimes think you would like more time to yourself, Carrieanne. I think feeling guilty is too. I sometimes wonder if I did enough for my Mum when she first became in need of help and get guilty feelings because, at the time, I was working everyday and had other problems within the family that I was coping with. I deal with the guilt by telling myself that I am doing all I can and I know there are a lot of people in Mum's home who don't have any relatives at all going to see them, poor things.

We are doing the best we can for our parents and I'm sure they appreciate it. I hope someone will look out for me when I'm that age.

Doobs
England


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PATRICIA703
PATRICIA703's Photo Posts: 882
12/30/09 9:38 P

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emoticon Carrieanne.


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JGMK55
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12/30/09 5:33 P

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Welcome, Carrieanne. It's nice to meet you.

“We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28


 
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