Whether you want to admit it or not — or feel guilty even saying it — every caregiver has moments when they wish they had their old life back. They miss the freedom of not having someone else’s life to manage.
Many of those caregivers who can afford it believe that once they have placed their parent or loved one into a senior care community, their worries are over, and their lives will return to some semblance of normalcy. That is partially true. Senior care communities remove the round-the-clock burden from caregivers and provide some peace-of-mind.
If you are an adult child who is a caregiver, you will find that after placing your parent in assisted living or memory care or even a skilled nursing facility that your work, in many ways, is just beginning. There is a litany of tasks that must be accomplished on a regular basis to ensure that your parent is as comfortable and happy as possible and, most importantly, that the care provided by the community aligns with that care that your parent needs.
You have now become an advocate, in addition to being a part-time caregiver, because the senior care community does not have the staff or resources to provide the level of care that you have been giving.
Your “job description” has changed, but you are still a caregiver, and you will experience some measure of caregiver fatigue.
However, there are some technology solutions on the horizon that can help alleviate your worry by enabling you to remotely monitor your parent’s vital signs, immediately access the documents and resources you need to better manage your parent’s affairs, and, above all, communicate more effectively with those professionals, family members and friends who can share those caregiving tasks that you have been shouldering alone.
In fact, solutions like this may be even more valuable if you are caring for a parent who is still living at home.
If you are a caregiver, caregiver fatigue, to some extent, will always be a part of your life. But you can lessen the burden and gain more freedom. There are solutions on the way.