Prepare to Care – planning ahead makes the circus more fun! It’s true, really. If you know you are going to have a baby, you get excited about the chance to care for the baby. If you know you are going to help out Mom or Dad after they age, you might be able to also get excited about the chance to care for them too.
What’s the secret? The secret is to plan. If you are scared, it is just the mind’s way of telling you to get your butt in gear and start planning to deal with all this stuff before it’s an issue.
There is good news too, there are agencies out there like AARP that have created care planning guides for you. You might think that they don’t apply to you, as a parent caring for you child or a special needs child – but I assure you there is something great to learn from these types of guides.
Prepare to Care – Forming a Team
Let’s pretend that you have already had the conversation with Mom or Dad and/or you have already made a decision to take care of your child. The next step is to form a team of people that can help you now – before things get harried.
While many of us have a tendency to want to do it alone, it is better if you are able to have others support you. That is why we created the Iriis app, by MindLight, LLC. I just couldn’t do it all by myself anymore. I might have seemed like superwoman, but I was drowning.
One of the many things I like about Iriis is the ability to form you team by invitation in more than one way. You can send an email or a text message. This makes it easier for some of your helpers, that might not be text savvy.
Prepare to Care – Make a Plan
If you are going to create team, you need to have something you can do with the time. One of the things that I struggled with was figuring out what I could ask for help with. I didn’t even know what I could ask for help with.
When waiting in the hospital, I use my phone to create tasks that needed to be done. It felt good to be able to feel active even when I was kind of just sitting there. This made it much easier to respond to requests and remember things I needed help doing.
I still struggle with this one sometimes. Yet, it is one of the most important parts of caregiving. I found that I had to actually start scheduling time to take care of myself. So, the handy dandy Iriis app comes back into play. I actually would make assignments to shower or to drink water. I worried Mom might not make it. Brushing my teeth didn’t seem important.
Preparing to care is one of the biggest gifts you can give yourself. Personally, I like technology, so I used the Iriis app to help me. What did you do to help you organize your tasks?
The Reluctant Ringmaster