Aging and daily routines

“My mom/dad is driving me crazy! She gets upset over the tiniest thing. She blames me when anything upsets her schedule.” Sound familiar? As a caregiver, you may have said the same thing on more than one occasion. I know I have. If you’re caring for an elderly parent, it’s important to remember they need routine. You may…

age related hearing loss

I Can’t Hear You – Part 2

When an older adult loses their hearing, they face the same fears as anyone with a different kind of disability. They worry about being marginalized, or seen as incompetent, or even stupid. Sometimes they lash out at the ones who try to help. Since Mike is semi-retired, he spends more time with my mom on…

Everyone I know Is Dead – Part 2

Aging and isolation, helping elders cope with seclusion when they start losing loved ones. I met Alene when she lived with her son, Greg and his wife. She is another elderly woman who struggled with loss and loneliness, but her story is different. When Alene became too frail for Greg and his wife to provide…

Homebound for the Holidays – Caregiving Challenges

  What are your plans for Christmas and New Year’s? Do they include a house-bound parent, spouse, or child? Do you dream of going away for the holidays, but can’t because of caregiving responsibilities? My mother’s birthday is Christmas Eve. She’ll be ninety-three this year. Mom expects a big family dinner on her birthday. How…

Heart Care in Caregiving

Martha S. says she was a ‘reluctant’ caregiver of her mother, a recovering alcoholic. Even though her mom had been sober for thirty-five years, Martha still remembered being a young teen cooking dinner while her mom was passed out on her bed. Yet as Martha spent more time caring for her mother, her reluctance melted…

Kuleana and Caregiving

At a conference I attended, a speaker used a Hawaiian word I’d never heard before: kuleana. It means a responsibility, but it’s more than a duty or task. It also carries a connotation of privilege. I wondered if I could apply this to caring for my mother. Could I adjust my perspective, and view this…

Are You a Caregiver?

  Caregiving can be a thankless, exhausting thing to do. Or it can be rewarding and fulfilling. Sometimes it’s both. There is hope. I’ve written a book called “The Caregiving Season: Finding Grace to Honor Your Aging Parent.” My prayer as you read is that you’ll find hope and grace, as I have, in my…