Caregiver Stress… My Take
Have you seen the statistics related to how badly caregivers fare? Not so good! I’ll leave it to you to google this.
Lots of research has apparently said that I’m toast.
So since I’ve been doing this for 6 years now I thought it would be a good idea since it’s almost Fall to take an almost change of season stock of myself:
do I have stress?
I had to think hard about this one.
Well, I do have stressors. That’s for sure. But I don’t think I’m stressed. Here is how I consider measuring this for myself:
1. Do I keep myself and my home clean and as neat as possible? Yes. Probably better than ever since I’m here most the time in “forced retirement”.
But I’m no perfectionist. Last Spring I planted a vegetable garden and forgot to water it often enough that it just flat gave out. I felt like a gardener failure. But right now I’m making plans to try it again next Spring and setting an iPhone watering reminder
2. Am I angry? Or do I cry a lot? No
3. Do I get breaks? Yes. I take my husband to adult daycare a few times a week.
4. Do I maintain friendships? The best I can. I run a weekly bible study out of my home. We are a crazy mix of Catholics and Baptists. Today we joked that we are the Batholics. As well, am starting back up with a ladies bible study at our church.
5. Do I have outside interests besides caregiving? Yes. I paint and, of course, blog, and am writing a book. And I read. I have a wide range of reading interests. And I oversee my daughter who’s homeschooling 11th grade.
6. Do I feel depressed or discouraged? Earlier on It was harder for me. I was ready for it to be over and not knowing how long used to just “eat my lunch”. But as time has passed I have gotten more peace about it.
I pray. And I memorize scripture.
7. Do I overeat or use alcohol/drugs to cope. Well no on the 2 latters. But the overeating I was guilty of. Right now I’m on day 5 of no sweets because I was overeating them. I should try overeating broccoli sometime.
These are the criteria in my mind for whether I’m over stressed. You might do your own inventory and with your own criteria. I suggest you do, especially after you check out the scary reports on what caregiver stress can do to a person.
Now I will sip the cranberry tea I just brewed and light me a pumpkin candle. Fall… come quick!