Life Beyond Caregiving



Helping Grandmother Walk

Last week, we discussed end-of-life care–giving you the appropriate steps and decisions that go into late stage care–in order to help make the journey as comfortable as possible for you and your loved ones.

End-of-life care can be difficult. Not only can end-of-life care be stressful for those going through the process–it can also be stressful for the caregiver and families who endure it with them.

Throughout this week, we’ll discuss the various stages of post-caregiving, how to transition from caregiver to post-caregiver, and the network of post-caregivers out in the community.

For today, we’ll start by outlining some basic, though very important things to keep in mind as you move beyond caregiving:

Feeling is part of the transition 

When a loved one passes, it is not uncommon for a caregiver to feel a range of emotions; these may come in small steady waves, or come on suddenly after keeping them at bay.

As a post-caregiver you may feel an utter sense of loss–not only from mourning the loss of a loved one, but also because you are unsure what to do with your time after committing to a daily routine of caring for a loved one for so long.

It’s important to remember that you are not alone. Feeling such emotions is a part of the transitioning process. Now, you have time to reflect on your own thoughts and take care of yourself, whereas before, your primary concern was caring for another.

Everyones caregiving experience is unique, but keeping in mind that there are others who may have gone through somewhat similar experiences and are now feeling what you are feeling can be comforting and may help you move forward.

Caregivers gain a new perspective on life

You might think that the skills you acquired while caring for your loved one are useless now that they have passed. However, that may not necessarily be the case.

According to a study taken from the American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias, researchers found the following:

  • After they have overcome the immediate sense of loss, former-caregivers possess a higher level of well-being than those have not provided care.
  • Researchers also found that post-caregivers find themselves to be more organized, financially savvy and highly efficient at completing tasks due to assuming the responsibilities of their daily routines and their loved ones.

Overcoming end-of-life care can be difficult. But as you transition beyond the life of caregiving, it’s important to remember that you have made a significant difference in your loved ones life. And through the caregiving process, you’ve also acquired a brand new set of skills and perspective, enriching your own life as well.

Physicians’ Choice Private Duty Assisted Living currently serving Omaha, Eastern Nebraska and Western Iowa provides seniors and their families a complete understanding of geriatric care options and helps families maneuver through the challenges of the system. Get your free Cost Comparison guide by clicking here. Or contact us for a free consultation or just to say hello!

photo credit: Rosie O’Beirne via photopin cc

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