LET MY EXPERIENCE GIVE YOU HOPE
When my caregiving experience began, I knew NOTHING about the demands of the role or how to move forward. I wrote my book Goodnight, Sweet: A
Caregiver’s Long Goodbye to offer future caregivers some of the wisdom I gathered through trial and error.
My grandparents were found on the side of the road in below-freezing temperatures two hours from their home with a flat tire and a partially-wrecked car! Doctors discovered Grandma had Alzheimer’s while Grandpa had an unspecified dementia, and from there the events just tumbled in one after the other.
Elder care is explored in detail, everything from medical diagnoses to long-term care, and I highlight the importance of having the right legal documents in place ahead of time. I also examine the family dynamics of caregiving—acknowledging that not all family members have honorable intentions.
My experience can shed some light on the rough and confusing road caregivers face, and I want to encourage you that if I could make it then you can too.
HAVE LEAH SPEAK
From small groups to sharing the virtual stage with Dr. Oz, I have talks to help make your role as a caregiver easier. I would love to speak to your group or have you join me at an upcoming
“Leah is a wonderful speaker, and it is clear that she has lived through it. She hits the highlights to help you know you’re not alone and reminds you to care for yourself and to find the humor.” – Terrie L.
My book and this Website are full of tips I discovered during my time as caregiver. I hope these will help you along your journey.More Tips
Make sure you have the proper paperwork in place such as Wills, Durable Power of Attorney and other medical orders. Know your loved ones’ final wishes ahead of time to make caregiving easier.
We were taught not to lie to our elders, but for the dementia patient, Therapeutic Lying – which is not a purposeful deception, but rather a way to keep the peace – can save you and your loved one from a lot of undue stress.
“WORK WITH” YOUR LOVED ONE
The mood of the dementia patient can change often as they struggle to understand what is happening and how to react. Listen and watch their reaction to change in surroundings and help them understand that you are with them and love them and will keep them safe.
TAKE TIME FOR YOU
Caregiving can be trying. You need time off. If you are able, schedule regular time off, even if it’s just to grab a quick coffee. If others offer to help, let them! You need the break.