I read this site from time to time, post when I can, and learn a lot of things from people. Mostly lurking, I found this is a great site, but a common thread I have found is, is that some of you have have been caregivers for years with no end in site. I guess I am looking for affirmation that some are not meant for this role, and that trying to get out of the caregiver role is full of guilt, angst, anger and confusion.
I have decided as an only child to a stroke patient whose recovery is at a standstill, that I have to make changes both for my sake and her sake. Mom was doomed from the start because of her aneurism 18 years ago, and she could not receive clot busting drugs when the stroke hit. I had psych evals done in December for her and they said this is as good as she is going to get and will need 24/7 care for safetys sake. This news was devastating and a relief. This gave me the nudge I needed to make a move for her that suits her needs and frees me to work and have peace of mind she is being taken care of.
But why do I feel so shitty about this?! I am soon to be divorced, I have no children, I have a job that is going to require travel, a home that needs work and her home that needs fixing up to sell so she can have more money to stay in this assisted living home. I have done this for 7 months, mostly alone with help from 2 other people. I have stayed home from work almost 2 days a week and tried to work from home without compromising my job.
I am tired of washing bedding and clothes each day
I am tired of fighting to do therapy
I am tired of showering a fragile body
I am tired of wiping a messy butt
I am tired of saying swallow the pills don't chew them
I am tired of cooking all 3 meals a day
I am tired of the "WHY?" and the "HOW COME?"
I am tired of the "gosh darn dag blamit you, you son of a bitch" when I try to help
I know she suffers from a stroke and lack of mental capacity, but she is starting to isolate herself in her own home. She wont go out anymore, she wont do anything anymore and not one of her many friends has offered to help in the last 7 months.
So I january 30th my caregiver role ends, but I feel like I have given up. Like I should try to do it longer, but I just cant. When I read posts here I cant believe that some of you will and have done this for years. I need affirmation that the caregiver role is not for everyone, and that I at least tried it, mostly alone, and that my decision is a good thing.
So this post is for the former caregiver, the one who broke away, the one who tried and said I cant do this anymore. How did you move on and get over the pain of letting go.