Alzheimers Disease Affects on the Caregiver
give yourself a break
I have a parent with Alzheimer's and some might say I am lucky because my loved one is in a home. It is still hard. I don't have to do the daily tasks but there is mental turmoil. I wish to dedicate this article to all the caregivers who give their all and more
I hear the stories of the caregiver forgetting one thing one day. You are but human. I know I forget that often. So the day didn't go as planned; did all days go as planned before you were a caregiver. Did every day go right as a parent? I know that caregiving is a hard job. I did it for my father eleven months before he had his stroke. I tried to be there for everything. He told me he couldn't get the television remote to work. I wrote directions on how to work it. I wrote his television schedule. He couldn't remember from one day to the next how to use the microwave. I got angry and frustrated and ready to walk away because I couldn't make this disease go away. I couldn't make him well. The doctor told me I had to take his car keys and driver's license away. I told her that she got that job because my father was a professional truck driver and had never had an accident in his life that was his. She told me after he had his stroke that I couldn't take care of him anymore. I was glad in a way but sure no one could take as good of care of him as me. I knew all his meds. I knew what he would and wouldn't eat. I was superhuman I thought. My friends had to tell me to let the professionals do the job they were hired for.
I know the frustration of receiving a call from your loved one saying they want to come home and that they will be good. Oh, the tears I cried when I had to repeatedly tell Dad the doctor said he had to get better first. The times I had to listen to him when I went to see him and he was mad or hurt because I had put him in a home. The guilt was there. I couldn't take care of my own father. I congratulate the people who can take the loved one into their home and give them their bath daily and meds and everything.
I don't go see my father at the nursing home, which is only a block away, every day. I thought for a while when they were looking for help that I could do that and be close to him. My loving husband put his foot down and said no. I fall in love with the people so easily that I would be a basket case every time someone passed. I visit some of the other residents and yes I do worry about them when I don't see them. I know my limits now. I feel guilty about the time I don't spend with him. I feel guilty because he is in a nursing facility when I don't have a job. My friends put that in a new light when they told me my health wasn't the best now because of the stress. It hurt me to admit they were right. But guilt is still there.
My dad in a home doesn't get exercise every day. They don't see everything that is wrong with him. I still notice the small things that are wrong that I would like to tell them they should see but they are overworked and they don't need the guilt. Give yourselves a break.