It’s National Caregivers’ Month–in honor, I am recycling one of my oldie but goodies! I hope it helps! This is a gentle reminder to all the selfless caregivers (I prefer the term carepartner), carepartners, doctors, nurses, orderlies, therapists, speech pathologists, social workers, and anyone who comes in contact with people touched by a neurological illness. Remember these 5 important points before you react, speak, take offense, lose your temper, or give up:
Everyone has a history and a story. The person who you are dealing with now has had and may still have a very full life that you only see a portion. Give them the credit and respect that they are due.
-The current state of the patient that you are seeing doesn’t need more stress, tension, or conflict in their lives, working together you both can make life better for the patient– and not worse.
-Give your loved one or patient flexibility and deal with them creatively and with an open mind. If they aren’t responding to medications, offer music therapy, complementary therapies, or seek a personal solution which motivates the patient. There is a need for gentleness and understanding. -The person with whom you are interacting may have done some important things in their life: raised a family, changed many lives, and been far more active than they are now. Their current condition is not by choice. Show compassion, patience, caring, and generosity. Remaining centered, patient, and mindful is good for both patient and carepartner.
-A mutual respect and understanding is crucial for needs to be met and for the caregiver/carepartner to be appreciated. -Someday, in the not so distant future, you or someone who you care deeply for, could be facing health challenges.