When you’re the primary family caregiver for a loved one with health issues, you may find yourself feeling significant grief before she’s even passed away. This is called anticipatory grief and it can throw you out of your caregiving groove if you’re not careful.
What’s Going to Happen Will Happen
Dwelling on your loved one’s prognosis or trying to force everyone to be happy or to respond a certain way to your loved one is going to create an undercurrent of resentment that you don’t want. Focus on keeping your loved one as comfortable as you can and do as much as possible to meet her needs as they change.
Don’t Ignore Your Feelings
This doesn’t mean that you should ignore your feelings at all. You’re going to feel sadness and a host of other emotions. Faking positive emotions or demanding that everyone else does is going to be confusing for everyone and will bury your true feelings. Instead, learn how to deal with your emotions without allowing them to overwhelm you. If possible, find someone that you trust to whom you can talk about what you’re feeling.
Keep Life and Routines as Normal as Possible
You and your loved one have routines that keep her care plan moving. Stick to those routines as much as you can and modify them when it makes sense to do so. The more normal you can keep life, the better for everyone who cares about your loved one. Talk to your loved one about what is working for her still and what she would like to change to make life easier.
Get Assistance as Much as You Can
If you’re still trying to do everything on your own, you’re likely feeling more overwhelmed than usual. Take a break from being your loved one’s constant caregiver and allow other family members or home care providers to handle some tasks for you. This frees you up to be able to take care of yourself and your emotions.
Everyone has a different way of dealing with their own grief, so avoid beating yourself up for not handling every stage perfectly.
When you are in need of care for a senior loved one, consider home care provided by Golden Heart Senior Care. We have offices nationwide. For more information, call us today at (800) 601-2792.