Posts Tagged ‘guilt’

Top 10 Things Learned On The Journey With My Mother

Top 10 Things Learned

On The Journey With My Mother

In Honor of Bessie Eveyln Morgan Baldwin – Little Mama

5/1/1921 – 12/4/2013

#1. LEGAL STUFF:  be prepared. It is hard, but being prepared and having a plan is required to provide best decisions for their care and protection.  The day will come when you know you must think of final arrangements and honoring your loved ones wishes. Be prepared.

#2. GUILT:  Care Warriors, ban this word from your life. If you are on the front lines of this war whether your loved one is home cared or in a care facility, you are a care warrior. Decisions made from a heart full of love are good decisions. Only you know what is best for your loved one, your family and for YOU! Guilt has absolutely no place in a care warrior’s journey.

#3. UTI’s:  Almost a certainty.  Pedialyte:  little mama had one minor UTI in 6 years; we gave it to her 1/2 to 1/2 juice 3x a day.  It balances electrolytes and helps with overall hydration.

#4. PLACEMENT:  Trust your instincts: care warriors know when it is time – sometimes we know it is time and because of #2 we hesitate. Do not hesitate.

#5. FIBLETS: I outright lied to Little Mama. I even wrote fake prescriptions to make her accept care sitters and to take showers. I made up a fake form from her favorite doctor and it said – To the children of: ________________ Bessie must not be left alone at any time. She must also take a shower at least 3x a week. If you are unable to make these things happen, I will have to step in and find a care facility that can take better care of her.” That worked during the feisty stages.

#6. LOUD:  when seeking BEST care for a loved one, be as loud as it takes for as long as it takes. Too often there you will find a scary lack of knowledge among medical professionals about dementia diseases.

#7. KIND:  be especially kind to YOU! We already know how kind you are to loved ones.

#8. HELP/RESPITE:  if it is available, ASK!! If it is not available, do not take any guff off of anyone not actively engaged in the war (this is part of being kind to yourself). #2 is important here, too.

#9. HOSPICE:  Do not wait – trust your instincts.  If your loved ones are eligible for Medicare, please ask primary care physician to order a hospice review/or call them yourself. Earth angels. If accepted, no more ER trips – medical staff comes to you and Medicare pays! And they provide personal hygiene 3x a week!!!

#10. LOVE: I admire you all so much. There is nothing easy about this journey and I know you all are here because of love. Love. It is the strongest word. Blessings on your heads.

A Big Thanks to Diane for sharing her life with all of us.

By – Diane Elinor Baldwin Hoover, ElderofFive

Care Warrior for Little Mama 2005 – 2013

Administrator, Memory People™, Inc

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No Regrets: Nursing Home Care

By:Michelle Remold

There are a few things that lead to the blog topic this week. I read a book, My Mother’s Hip: Lessons from the World of Eldercare by Luisa Margolies, for my Nursing Home Administration class. It was a good book and I would recommend it. I also had a few discussions that led me to this topic.

We all want to do what is best for ourselves and for those we love. The decisions aren’t always easy to make, but we have to trust we will do what is best. It could be packing up and moving to another state, deciding on which college to go to, or for the purposes of this blog, placing someone in a nursing home. It’s easy to think that once your loved one needs nursing home care that you’ll know and it will be a fairly easy transition. Pick a facility and move them in, how hard can that be? The answer is extremely hard. Not only do you have to pick a good facility, but also deal with the emotions that may accompany that transition, especially guilt.

I know it is easier said than done to not feel guilty. I know when my grandpa first went into the nursing home everyone felt guilty for having to put him there. The fact was he had sun downers and was constantly busy. It got to the point where caring for him at home wasn’t feasible any longer. They felt so guilty for putting my grandpa in the nursing home that after a few months they moved him back home; only to have to move him again. Having my grandpa in the nursing home was what was best for everyone. It kept him safe, happy, and healthy and gave everyone else a chance to regroup and not always have an eye on what grandpa was doing. While it was what was best, it still wasn’t an easy decision. I cannot imagine how hard it would be to put someone in a nursing home, but when it comes down to their safety and health and the health of the caregiver you have to do what is best.

There comes a point where one has done all they can to care for their loved one at home, but if it gets to be too much, putting them in a nursing home might be the best option. It needs to be decided what will keep them the safest and the healthiest and that might involve a nursing home. I don’t think anyone should feel guilty for making this choice;  it is made out of love and concern.

008Michelle graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with her Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology: Social Sciences and a minor in Family Studies. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Aging Studies and Nursing Home Administration from Minnesota State University Mankato.

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