The holiday season is often a time you look forward to because you visit with family, relax, don’t have to deal with many of the other stresses that come along with life throughout the rest of the year. This holiday season, though, you noticed something about your mother: she needs support.
You didn’t notice it the last time you visited with her. Maybe that was during the summer or sometime in the fall. You might have visited her at her house. At home, she may be confident in herself and know exactly what needs to be done.
At your house or another family member’s house, things may have been different. She may not have been as strong, confident in her steps, and was more hesitant to try certain things.
The holiday season is a time when we get exposed to people we may not spend a great deal of time with throughout the year. It’s a time when we may recognize certain challenges that our older loved ones are beginning to face. Now what? Now is the time to take a few steps.
Learn about home care services
You may assume you can be her caregiver, but it’s going to be a lot of stress. Even if you’re not working and don’t have a lot of other responsibilities, this is going to be a stressful job. It can impact the relationship with your mother. Once she begins relying on you for small things, she’s probably going to call on you for more and more assistance throughout the day.
Discuss home care options
Talk about the prospect of hiring a home care aide. It may not be necessary right away, but if your mother is having difficulty attending to her own basic care because of her age, she doesn’t need just short-term care; she needs long-term care.
Set a limit on your time. Set limits on just how much care and support you can offer. Whether you’re working or not, if you don’t limit yourself, you will probably find yourself getting overwhelmed with stress before long.
If you don’t feel you are the best person to take care of your mother, be honest about it. She or somebody else may assume you don’t care, but you know that’s simply not the truth. Keep the conversation honest and be truthful with yourself and everyone else.
Develop a plan
When you realize your mother is having difficulty with her own basic care, develop a plan. This plan should include ideas about senior care options, learning about home care services, talking about it, and beginning to incorporate this level of support into her daily or weekly routine.