On this episode of Caregivers Stories, Sue Anne Kirkham shares her caring story with me about caring for her father and stepmother. Sue Anne and I agree that becoming a caregiver was challenging, however rewarding at the same time.
Sue Anne shared about her journey assisting her father and stepmother as they struggled with declining health and the onset of dementia. It was 2005, both Sue and her husband at the time had full-time jobs. When her stepmother had the diagnosis, Sue Anne knew that she had to step in and help her father after he told her that he wants to move her to an assisted living. Sue Anne then quit her full-time job and started going over her parent's place every weekday, Monday through Friday. It hasn’t been a smooth journey, but Anne learned so many things that she wants to share with everyone who just found out that their loved one has dementia. She wants to remind every caregiver to expect the unexpected and, and be really patient because just like everyone else who is going through this stage, you're not going to know from day one, how to deal with all of what’s happening. She also highlighted that caregivers should also be patient with the outsiders for these people will not right away understand. One of the many takeaways, do not take things personally, is a tough thing to practice, however, one should always keep their emotions in check.
Listen to the rest of the interview for Kimberly, and Sue Anne’s experience as caregivers for their loved one will give a glimpse of what it is like to be in a reversed situation where they now have to care for a parent. You shouldn’t miss this discussion for you will take their lessons with you as your own.
Learn more about Sue Anne, a freelancer who blogs at Your Recipes for Life and author of Loving Zelda: A Stepdaughter’s Caregiving Journal and connect with her online:
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