Make the best choices for your Medicare needs with AARP’s Medicare Made Easy. Try it today!

Reply
Conversationalist
0
Kudos
1199
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

1,199 Views
Message 1071 of 1,088

I did not take my mother, who died from Alzheimer’s just  this past November, anywhere. I took time for me, usually a weekend. It was a great ‘pick me up’ and I felt some relief when I got home. I strongly encourage everyone who’s a caregiver, if possible, to get out of the house, even if it’s just for lunch. You desperately need ‘me time’ with all this going on.

Report Inappropriate Content
0
Kudos
1199
Views
Info Seeker
0
Kudos
1249
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

1,249 Views
Message 1072 of 1,088

My hubby's family has taken care of people in need for generations.  What I am most impressed by them is the relationships they've built with the community.  For example, they have even used the same vacation cabin for so long, the owners renovated it to make it more accessible over the years.  Thank you!

Report Inappropriate Content
0
Kudos
1249
Views
Bronze Conversationalist
0
Kudos
1317
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

1,317 Views
Message 1073 of 1,088
I am a deaf 59 year old and have a 40 year old son with Cerebral Palsy. I also have Meniere's disease which causes vertigo, so I can never trust my ability to drive as it can change in a second. I have two options for taking a vacation. I can have a friend go with me to drive if I cannot or I can take a charter bus as my son will not fly or ride on a train due to recent major mishaps with both. Because we are both disabled, any vacation we take has to be very affordable and not long in duration. Most often we do day trips when a friend is available to go. If we do go long distance, it is usually to visit family or friends who can accommodate us, and we save on hotel bills & food bills also with that option.
Sandi Burkhart
Report Inappropriate Content
0
Kudos
1317
Views
Info Seeker
0
Kudos
1521
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

1,521 Views
Message 1074 of 1,088

I take care of my boyfriend and he has COPD and Emphysema and its hard to take vacations and traveling far. So I like to things that he likes to do. The one thing he LOVES is fishing so thats what we do. So i think my advice would be to do something that the loved one you are taking care of likes to do.

Report Inappropriate Content
0
Kudos
1521
Views
Info Seeker
0
Kudos
1676
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

1,676 Views
Message 1075 of 1,088
Thanks for sharing, love your story, all about love, 😇👍🏾
Report Inappropriate Content
0
Kudos
1676
Views
Info Seeker
2
Kudos
2041
Views

Vacation Travel as a Caregiver ( Contest Entry)

2,041 Views
Message 1076 of 1,088

I have been the primary caregiver for my mother for over seven years, with support from my brothers and sisters.  My mom had a stroke one year and a year later, fell against house brick and suffered a hematoma which required emergency brain surgery.  Since then she has been doing relatively well, with some dementia at 93.

We just returned from our family reunion in Ohio  My mother is the matriarch of the family, with five children and no remaining siblings.  She enjoyed the reunion and did well with the trip and activities.  I expected her to very confused and easily tired.  There was some confusion, but overall she lived in the moment and loved every minute of it.

I had a nice time and was able to relax and enjoy family.  My brothers and sisters and in-laws and mom's grands were all helpful and supportive.  She can walk with a walker, however, we used a wheelchair to get her around .  It worked out very good.

What helped me to not get stressed out before the trip was to start packing a week prior to leaving.  That way I was able to think through what I needed to take for all occasions.  I didn't overpack and had everything we needed.  

I'm rejuvenated and she's tired.  We both have been resting since returning home. We thank God for His many blessings!

MLB

7/19/18

 

 

Report Inappropriate Content
2
Kudos
2041
Views
Info Seeker
0
Kudos
2652
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

2,652 Views
Message 1077 of 1,088

My mother has not had an easy life.  Her father was an alcholic.  My father had a very sever stroke at 45 and died at 49 and she was only 46 when she became a widow.  In her 60's she met a wonderful man and remarried.  They were only married a short time when he was diagnosed with leukemia.  He died just a couple years later.  She has been a caretaker for boths husbands.  I am an only child and my mother and and i are very different.  I am very soft hearted just like my dad was and she is quit the opposite.  She has always said whatever is on her mind. For example:  I have been overweight my entiure life.  I joined the local water aerobics class and I also joined for her.  I thought it would be a great time to spend together.  The first time that we went she told me how awful I looked in a swim suit. Needless to say but I never went back. Now she has dementia and I am responsible for taking care of her.  People see her behavior now and say things like "Oh you have to understand that she doesn't understand what she's saying".  They don't understand that she has been this way my entire life. It's not the dementia.  She is still in her home and lives alone. My husband and I are only about a mile away so I check on her frequently.  People are quick to give advice when they haven't been in your situation.  I take one day at a time and so far she has not done anything dangerous so I think she is better in her home than anywhere else.  I still work full time and am not able to retire for a few years yet.  It's hard when she calls at all hours the night.  Sometimes she is asking about people who have died. "My mom is dead isn't she?".  My husband and her do not get along.  We have been married 35 years and he has seen all tyhings that she has done and said to me and can't get past it.  She's my mom and have to do whatever I can to take care of her.  Even her physician told me "You better put your big girl pants on and tell her what she going to do. She doesn't need to be alone."  Easier said than done.  I can't believe I'm even saying this but I can't get past the anger.  My father owned property that was left to him by his parents. I was only 20 when my father died and I grew up in a home where you didn't discuss finanaces.  Many years after my fathers death I received some information that really threw me.  A cousin asked me what I did with the money that I received from the sale of the land. I never received any money.  She told me that the land was supposed to be passed down to me when my father died.  The land was sold by my mom to my fathers brother.  So I couldn't get past it and I went for a walk with my uncle and I asked him.  He was very upset.  He said that my mother told him that I did not want the land.  He mailed the check to me.  I never got or knew anything about it.  My mom kept it ($20,000).  To this day she doesn't know that I know.  Her money is very important to her. If I confronted her about it she would never speak to me again. I know that it sounds terrible but I don't want to spend all her money on Long Term Care.  Hoping that atleast I could get it after she passes away but apparently that will not happen.  Would love to use it to help my grandchildren with college tuition.  She went to the bank and told them that I was stealing her money out of her checking account.   The bank knows the situation and called me to let me know. They sat with her for 2 hours and went over her entire account and told her that no one except her had done anything in her account. So, I continue to do what I need to.  I try to push push the anger and resentment down.  I recently took her out of state for 10 days to her family.  My husband and I need a break.  This puts so much stress on our marriage.  I would be so excited and relieved!  Thank you.

Report Inappropriate Content
0
Kudos
2652
Views
Info Seeker
5
Kudos
3976
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

3,976 Views
Message 1078 of 1,088

My name is Beth.  My 92 year old mom moved in with me in May 2017.  She was living by herself since 1993 when my dad passed away and was doing great until her pest control company found termites under her house and recommended a tent treatment which enclosed her entire home which meant she couldn't  be thete for several days so she came and stayed with my family which is a little over an hour from her house.  Her house was treated, mom went back home and was thete for a couple of days and then my middle daughter went to spend the weekend with her and the day my daughter was going to come back home, I received a call from my daughter while I was at work and she told me that grandma was scared, didnt feel safe,  and didn't think she could be alone so I talked to my mom and told her to come back to my house with my daughter and stay for awhile until she felt ready to go back and she never went back home.  She made the right decision which I know was hard for her to do.  She's gotten forgetful (short term memory loss) and was having issues with driving.  Having her has been a blessing because I don't worry about her like I did when she was at her house but the adkustments we have had to make have been challenging including vacations and day trips.  She's  healthy as a horse but is slow getting around and a bit wobbly.  My family goes camping alot and grandma isn't fond of camping but she's  a trooper and has gone with us quite a few times and each time she would always comment on our way back home how much she enjoyed the trip.  We've  taken her to our one week time share trip as well and making accommodations to suit her needs with the condo we pick so she doesn't  have to climb alot of stairs.  We bring her because she isn't  safe to be alone for long periods of time.  It's very tiring at times taking care of her needs and I get no breaks.  I am able to work at home and between my hisband and two daughters who are still at home while attending college we all help out to make sure she's cared for.  Sometimes I feel like I can't do this anymore but then the next day I'm grateful that I'm  able to have her with me.  I have two older brothers and an older sister.  They would be willing to help me out but my mom and I share a diffetent bond other than mother and daughter; we are both registered nurses.  We can relate to each other on a diffetent level.  My oldest brother got real sick in the Fall of 2016 and we almost lost him.  He was a heavy drinker for many years and burned alot of bridges with family and when he was so sick, my mom asked me to get him to a doctor which I did and after being in the hospital for 10 days and finding out he had prostate cancer, I can say that today he is cancer free and is living a new, healthy life.  I helped him through all of his doctors appointments, surgeries, follow up visits, and being the friend he needed to get through all of that and after he was better I inherited my mom so since Fall of 2016 I've been a family caregiver and I wouldn't have it any other way.  My respite care to myself if taking my three dogs for a walk every morning, spending time in the yard, taking my mom to visit her dear friend or taking her to the casino.  I know that someday, I might not be able to care for her anymore so even though thete are alot of days when I feel drained, frustrated, unappreciated or completely burned out, I think about what would my mom do if she were in my shoes and it's those moments when I realize this too shall pass and how lucky I am that she picked me to want to spend her last years with - her doctor says she's going to be a Centurian and that warms my heart.  

Report Inappropriate Content
5
Kudos
3976
Views
Info Seeker
10
Kudos
4888
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

4,888 Views
Message 1079 of 1,088

I just thought it was me until I learned of AARP awareness and resources I was going crazy.  The only programs I like for my mom is at the Alzheimer's Association in my area.  The resources are very helpful and has made me so much more aware.  Adult day care under Oasis in Santa Monica was an option but for one month is was so costly last year until I couldn't continue to take her but I did have a chance to breath and focus on business .  Now Im going to revisit adult day care and budget plan for her to attend at least 4 days out the month because I'm not doing any selfcare.

Report Inappropriate Content
10
Kudos
4888
Views
Info Seeker
15
Kudos
6633
Views

Re: AARP Caregiving Summer Break Contest

6,633 Views
Message 1080 of 1,088

I hope this is the place for my story. I clicked all around but cannot seem to find the 'appropriate' place for the contest but I could really use a break. I am the 'sandwich generation'. My parents had me very late in their life. My sister was 16 when I was born and my brother 13 years old then me. I am the sole care taker of my almost 96 year old Mom. My mom is the best. She is very kind, giving and loving. She moved to my town at 90 years young and gave up her car of which she drove around in her small town until then (it WAS time). She lives in her own condo but I maintain her house as well as mine. I have 15 year old and am married and lots of furry kids. While having a teenager, one might think that 'its easy' - well it is not. For the past 5 years, I have had to divide by time up between my son, my mom, my pets, my husband and my jobs. I never get a day off because even if I am off from my 'job', I still have my legally blind Mom to care for by doing her bills, taking her shopping, ironing, taking care of her dog, taking her to doctor appts after teaching all day long, etc. and this takes time, my time. Time is important to me - I am a 13 year Breast Cancer survivor and my husband had brain surgery the year before I was diagnosed - we both are fine (our son was 2-3 at the time). My Mom was the only one there for us thick and thin through our jouneys. I love her dearly and what I do is a 'labor of love' but I am 52 years old and tired. I have worked up to three jobs at one time all the WHILE doing for everyone else. My days start at 5:30 am and end sometimes as a late as 9:30 pm before I put my head down to go to bed. I sort of don't like this forum because it sounds like I am complaining and I know how lucky I am to STILL have my Mom. The family members all live 15 hours away and visit maybe, once a year. I would love a week to go away or weekend with my husband who is always like 5th on the list of 'things to do' (haha-spending time) and lately, I just feel old and run down. My husband and I have only had 4 weekend getaways since we were married 18 years ago. I don't feel like I own my life because of all the things I have to do for my mom. She can't afford to 'hire' an elder care helper - that's me. She has great neigbhors but she won't ask them to take her places - she'd rather wait until I get home from work taking me away from my family. My son is growing and he is growing away from me. After my Mom had been living in my town for two years, I picked my son up from school and he asked me in a dull tone of only a 4th grader can ask, 'where are we taking Nana today?'; I just want to go home Mom.' ... I just want to go someplace where I don't have to rush to hurry to get back to do something for someone else. I just want some time for me and not feel like I am on a schedule ALL OF THE TIME!!!! - Rush rush rush..to do for others but don't get to enjoy my life. This sounds horrible but I need a break.....Yet, I know in 4 years, my son God willing will be in college, my Mom could be gone or she'd be almost 99, and my horse gone (my therapy). LIfe is so fast, so quick, so desperate at time, so full of life yet so sad and tiring at others.

Report Inappropriate Content
15
Kudos
6633
Views