The Dominoes of Caregiving: Those Changes

Your caree has a change in condition, which causes a change in your caregiving role, which then seems to change your life.

How do you manage the domino effect of caregiving?

This was the topic of this morning’s Table Talk episode on Your Caregiving Journey. Holly, who cares for her husband, Dave, joined us to talk about how she adjusts to their changes because of his diagnosis of Frontotemporal dementia. You can listen to our show via the player below.

I loved our conversation because Holly walked us through the process of her internal changes. When she changed, she learned how to manage the changes. And, most important, when she changed from wishing for a different life to embracing the one she has, she found her peace. She’s no longer toppled by the dominoes. Instead, she steadies them.

During our discussion, Holly spoke about the five activities which bring her back into herself, which help her keep a healthy perspective, which allow her to enjoy her life. I’d love to know, in honor of our weekly Happy Saturday: What are the activities that help you breathe in life? How do you make time for them?

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About Denise Brown

I began working with family caregivers in 1990 and launched in 1996 to help and support them. Through my blog, I share words of comfort and offer coping strategies and tips. I also write opinion pieces about recent research, community programs and media coverage of caregiving issues. I've written several caregiving books, including "The Caregiving Years, Six Stages to a Meaningful Journey," "Take Comfort, Reflections of Hope for Caregivers" and "After Caregiving Ends, A Guide to Beginning Again." You can purchase my books and schedule a coaching call with me in our store.

4 thoughts on “The Dominoes of Caregiving: Those Changes

  1. Bette

    I really enjoyed today’s show, thank you Denise and Holly.

    I love to swim and recently began swimming 3 mornings a week. I have found though, that the evenings work better for me, because it gives me something to look forward to in my day.

    I liked Holly’s suggestion of socializing once a week. I use to love to go out with a girlfriend on occasion, but because of our moves and my lack of energy, I have not been doing this.

    Tomorrow I am spending some time in Harrisburg by myself shopping, and this afternoon, remembering Holly’s words, decided to call a friend to meet me for lunch. I went to the phone twice before finally putting forth the effort to try and connect.

    It is so sad that we can get bogged down in caregiving, and all the extras that our lives entail, to be too tired to make time for ourselves and the things that bring us joy. I continue to remind myself that caregiving can be better, but I can’t expect that to happen on its’ own.

    Thank you for the encouragement!

  2. Holly Eburne

    Congratulations Bette on taking your first big step towards living your best life! I love how fast you implemented the message you received this morning. You are already sounding stronger.

    Sending you a big Yahoo for empowering yourself to make this happen.



  3. Bette

    Thank you for the encouragement!

    I am just getting ready to go and my mother (who can’t be left alone anymore–so it takes a bit of planning for me to go–)says to me, “don’t you feel badly that you are leaving your children?”

    Taking time for ourselves takes a lot of planning and preparing, I know it is so valuable for caregivers to do, in order to “reenergize” for this long journey, but sometimes it rattles your heart a bit to get there! (:

    We almost have to prepare schedule-wise and emotion-wise. Thanks again!


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