I have been giving my mom increasing attention since early January and I noticed that I can keep her appointments and health care concerns without making many, if any, mistakes or errors – however, when it comes to my own life I seem to be dizzy.
It is easy to not pay one of my bills on time, but attend to all of Mom’s financial duties; not make health care appointments for me, but be on top of it for her – bringing her to the best specialists I can find.
Again, I know it is very important to my mother that I stay healthy so, after a month of not going to the gym, I’m back on track. I also took about 2 hours to clear the piles of clutter found around my house – because I become very dizzy when there is disorder all around me. For some individuals that isn’t a problem – but for me, clear counters mean a clear mind (or so that is my hope)!
Oh, and I did get a massage this past week. It is important that as family caregivers we find ways of receiving touch and relaxation in healthy ways. Diet is also important for staying well –I am again focused on veggies, fruits and lean protein (that is a challenge for me because I’m a vegetarian and carbs are an easy fill). Each of us can fall into bad self-care habits when stressed.
Survey your routine, diet, exercise and relaxation and see what grade you would give yourself on “self-care”? If it is a “C” or lower, it is time to make some changes if you want to truly be there for that parent whom you love and provide care for. Remember, even if you don’t do the hands on care, you are still a caregiver.