The Holiday Caregiver

Now that we’ve officially begun the holiday season, we’ve started one of the most stressful times of the year. There’s just so much to do with holiday shopping and preparations. Combine that with the regular disruptions to the family and work schedules that seem to multiply with the holidays and add the tensions of the obligatory family get- togethers that you may not want to attend. Top it off with possibly dicey winter weather that hinders you at every move. If that isn’t enough, continue to care for your loved one on a daily basis. It’s basically a recipe for disaster.

There are things you can do to help weather the holiday storm. First and foremost, don’t pressure yourself with unrealistic expectations. You can’t be everything to everyone. Do what is reasonable and within your grasp and don’t be shy about asking for help from family members. In addition, employ shortcuts—-order meals in, shop on-line, and pare down how many events you want to participate in.

Take care of yourself. Eat well and get enough sleep. Continue to get some exercise—it will help to de-stress. Make some time for yourself whether it means reading a book or taking a nap. Try to stay away from alcohol—it’s actually a depressant.

Try to stay organized. Keeping a to-do list you can refer to will help you stay in control of your time and help you finish those things that are most important while weeding out those chores that can be done by someone else.

Be open to change. What worked last year may not be a good idea this year. If you ordinarily have a large gathering, maybe something on a smaller scale will be easier on your loved one. You may want to adjust the time of day the festivities will occur. Is your loved one more comfortable earlier or later in the day? Do you always do all the cooking? Maybe everyone can bring a dish.

Be sure to plan some time with family members and those who are close to you. It’s good for your soul and it’s what the holidays really are all about.

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Filed under Caregiver, companionship, Health care services, House Keeping, Personal care, Senior Care, Trillium HomeCare, Uncategorized

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