Welcome back to the caregivers thread. Even though the names may have changed, having this place to share the deep experiences, love, frustration, problems and solutions of caregiving means a lot. Love.

Lets here it for all the Caregivers!

A wonderful breed of people!

Nice to see this here.

If anybody is dealing with caregiving, we're here for you.

Hello to all VLZ folks and welcome to the caregivers zone!

I started this thread in 2006 while I was deep into parenting 2 teenagers and caring for my mother with advancing Alzheimer's disease. It was a 10 year rollercoaster of emotions and experiences. Altho' it's been a number of years since she died, I find myself still experiencing bouts of PTSD from those years. 

This folder has been one of the kindest, most supportive spots in the zone (Hep C also included). As many zoners are aging and find themselves a part of the "sandwich" generation - raising kids and caring for ill/aging parents, this place can be a small but real "shelter from the storm."

There are quite a few folks from the PZ who have a wealth of experience who have moved over here who will be able to offer love, support and damn good advice. Just ask.

There is very little that is more difficult and devastating than the slow decline and ultimate death of a loved one for whom you are caring. If you need to rant - please do so. That also goes for bitching, crying and here it's all ok. Don't be shy - we are here for you!


Today is the second anniversary of Greg's death. Caring for him was the toughest thing I've ever done, and I hope there's nothing worse in my life to come.

Deep thanks and much love to all of you who were with me during those times.

I love and miss him so much.


I know you miss Gregg so much

Continued deepest respect and condolences.

Much love to you Judit. And Thank you for your support and understanding this past year.


Also,thanks to Murtha 2 for starting and keeping Caregiving sub site going.

I first came onto the zone thru the caretakers thread a few years back when I was caring for my nephew ( now 17 and going into the Marines in August) who I was caring for while his mom got her shit together. She never did and is doing her 3rd stint in prison, very sad !  Glad to see this is still here, folks with a lot of life experience and can help each worked for me back then :) 

Judit, Sending you out light and love ~

I am now caring for my 85 yr old mother pretty much by myself, none of my siblings have the time or love to give to is sad ! My son, my husband ( Bob) and myself are the ones instrumental in her care, she has COPD and is hooked up to oxygen 24/7, does not drive and is withering away on a daily basis. Am I a saint ? NO friggan way...but I do what I have to, we never were close as I am the oldest and took off at 18 and kept going !!  Sometimes I feel like packing up and going back to CT with my hubby, but I know I am needed here and this is where my journey has me for now. 

Lyn, I read this a week ago and drifted into life (and grief). That's a big amount of work you have taking care of your mom. Is she able to take care of herself at all or is it all on you?
Watching her wither away... I can see it in my mind. Wishing you your own strength as you go through these days.

Reading the Happy Birthday Dad thread in OS brought me back to this thread. Engaging with our parents (or others) on this intimate level, whether mental, emotional or physical takes a very special love and focus. Or maybe not love in every case, but committment, for sure. 

Helping my mom through her day-to-day life while there is no other real help is exhausting, as you must know. My dad is away for a week while his caregiver is away and I'd hoped the break would provide my mom a little respite. If it is, it's not suiting her well much of the time. Her paranoia, dementia, stress and general uneasiness are solidly in place. She's a great woman who no longer has any filters about what she says. It's hard to see her feel that she has fewer and fewer friends and know that some of that is that her hearing sucks (she won't wear hearing aids) and some is her fears and then her lack of filters... We all love her dearly, but man, she's exhausting.

Dad will be home today with a temporary caregiver that neither of my parents has met before. Dad's body is frozen, it doesn't move on its own and is hard to move with the strength of someone else. He can sit up if placed in a wheel chair, but otherwise is in bed. He is moved and cleaned and cared for, and has never had a bedsore. We think that's one of the signs of a job being well done. His regular caregiver is a Tibetan man who was once a bodyguard to the Dalai Lama and is at a bodyguard reunion in India. He's a very compassionate man and works hard to keep my parents well.

i get to go home on Wednesday!!! 

{{{{{{{Judit and her folks}}}}}}}}}}

I am new to this reality.  My sister and I moved our parents from being isolated on the family farm to sister's house here on the gulf coast.  Dad is 80 and into dementia, mother is 86 and has afib - two hospitalizations since New Years Day - COPD with 24/7 oxygen, and stage three kidney failure. 

I am going to spend seven days with them on Monday as my sister goes upstate to get her daughter married.  I feel pretty good about handling it as I have done several shorter stays as my sister has done other wedding related trips.

When we finally got POA we discovered their bills were months behind, some insurance cancelled, and a relative who was stealing them blind. All the bills have been corrected, insurance reinstated, and the relative is locked out and related issues resolved. 

This is after years of trying to get them to agree to let us help. I guess it is really hard to give up independence. 

Also have a brother who is rocking the boat, is paranoid and conspiratorial, and threatening arrest, lawsuits, even private investigator even though he has not lifted a finger.  I have consulted my dad's lawyer, an elder law attorney where the parents live, and my personal attorney. All three independently agreed that we are doing everything right and he has nothing.  Still he is a PITA.

I have learned there are many similarities with what people go through during this life event.  I am grateful my sister has taken them in, we have fixed each of them a nice room and remodeled a bathroom for them. We are using in home assistance for five hours each day four days a week while my sister does her part time job.   Very helpful.

Good luck to us all.

Aiq, you've already dealt with so much - hoping you all get through the next 7 days with some ease and the grace you always show. I was about to say that it's hard, but that's my experience and may not be yours. The family member thing sounds gnarly. Take care of yourself. How's your shoulder (I think it was your shoulder that you were waiting to hear more about)?

Good luck to us all is right!

It is going pretty good, I was a bit nervous as I have both of them for the first time, madre was in the hospital and rehab during my previous duty times. My sister has things pretty well organized. 

My shoulder is being treated with PT, so far so good.  No surgery.

Thanks, judit. 

Good luck to you and your sister, LeS. 

It's not easy, I've been there, although thankfully I didn't have any boat rockers.

I suppose being an only child means having no boat rockers, so there's that blessing.

We're nearing the end of the 20 year odyssey it has been caring for both my parents. Dad left us 12 years ago, and it wasn't until then that I realized quite how much he was doing it on his own with no help from Mom. Well, now Mom is in the final days. We've started hospice care. She stopped eating a few days ago, so it can't be too long. I think I've already done all the mourning, and there's no estate left. I've been contacting family around the country, so all that is left is relief, or maybe I'm fooling myself and I'll fall apart. Asking for prayers for a swift and peaceful transition to the next plane of existence. 

Dear Dave,

Hoping for peace and ease in transition, for your Mom and you and your family. You have been so involved in her care and shown up when needed; even if most of the work is done you will find yourself in a new and odd place.

For me: even though I'd been grieving Greg's loss for at 6 or so months before he died I was so shocked by his death. I thought I would just be sad and relieved, but that wasn't it at all. I don't know where the shock came from but it was big. That might not be your experience, of course, but who knows? It's all new.

I've loved reading about the loving care you've given your mom. Your 20 years of caregiving is huge! I hope you'll find space. Drum space, love space, relaxing space, space for you.

Love, judit

Thoughts and prayers for your mom, Zeke.

Peace and strength to you and your family.