What's your movement?
I want to start a movement that advocates for regularly scheduled respite time for family caregivers.
I believe that full-time, unpaid family caregivers deserve regular respite time so they can renew, refresh and recharge their caregiving "batteries".
This change is important to me because I spent fourteen years as the sole caregiver to my first spouse who was paralyzed from the shoulders down after a freak accident. He needed care 24/7, 365 days a year. During those fourteen years, I've since calculated that I had approximately seven days total away from the responsibilities of caregiving. I lived in an isolated rural area, had no family nearby to help and zero resources to hire any help. As a result, I lived in burnout mode for years and ultimately, my own physical and mental health suffered. Eventually, our marriage ended (in part) because I just couldn't do it all alone anymore.
I plan to help lessen burnout for full-time family caregivers by blogging, writing books, essays and articles that include this topic. I am also planning to conduct letter-writing campaigns, and speak at events to educate the general public, government officials and the media on the rapidly growing, critical need to fund respite services in every community.
I am currently writing a three-book series that will provide caregivers with roadmaps to healing body, mind and spirit. I address issues surrounding respite care (and the lack thereof) in my book series. Book one is written and is currently in editing mode. I plan to self-publish it in the first quarter of 2020.
(Do any of you care for a paralyzed person in your family? If so, please friend me here on Caregiving.com. I'd love to get to know you and learn about your experiences as a caregiver in that space!) 😀
First of all...what an angel you are! I love your movement and I am in the beginnings of wanting to start something similar for the Alzheimer's/Dementia caregivers as well. I am looking at signing up for some facilitator courses...so much out there, I'm trying to focus...hahah
I wish you all wonderful things!