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Thursday, July 4, 2013

4 - Let freedom ring!

Today is day 4 (and my 4th post) in the 30 day blog challenge I joined.  For anyone "just tuning in" this post may leave you wondering what the heck I am rambling about.  I promise it won't take too long to go back and review my first 3 posts so you can catch up with my story.  For anybody thinking there is nothing here that could affect you, I hope you're wrong.  I hope you are wrong because, not because I wish bad things for you, but because that would mean that you are truly alone in life.  You see, although my story revolves around senior care giving and health care, I believe there are lessons within my story that could be applied to ANYBODY that might EVER know someone (or be someone) who is incapacitated, no matter their age.


Wow!  I could have gone a lot of directions with that title in this particular blog.  I decided that many of you will be enjoying your holiday & likely are not interested in a lengthy, wordy blog today, so........

I'm only going to fill PART of the page!

When I think of FREEDOM and INDEPENDENCE my mind goes in many different directions, which is making it very difficult to produce this post today!

When I think of the loss of FREEDOM and INDEPENDENCE for many seniors it makes me sad.  Sure, they still technically have rights.

However their FREEDOM may be limited by many things: health; wealth; social stature; family availability; and insurance guidelines, just to name a few!  Their INDEPENDENCE could be affected and limited by these same things and more.

In my opinion, it is important that we help them maintain as much FREEDOM and INDEPENDENCE as possible even with these limitations.  These things take on different meaning for different people and different situations.

We also must understand and accept that the definition of FREEDOM and INDEPENDENCE may change as our parents age and/or develop health problems that go beyond anything we have likely ever experienced and they may continue to evolve & change.

Before you (and hopefully your parents) decide what they need, you must first decide how much of your own FREEDOM and INDEPENDENCE you are able to sacrifice.  If you have ever raised a child, you know that how much of either of these things you actually have are directly connected to what your child needs.  It's very similar with senior care!  Some days you will have freedom and some days you won't - it's that simple!

Have a safe INDEPENDENCE Day!




What's your definition of Senior freedom?

17 comments:

Kat Simpson said...

I admire you for your role as caregiver and applaud you for being public about it. This is a growing issue and I'm glad to see it becoming more open and talked about.

Great blog post for all to consider regarding the loss of freedom as we age.
thank you for sharing.

healthcare hostages said...

Thanks for taking the time to look it over and your kind comments! I know it can be a topic that many of us would just as soon never even think about, but not thinking or talking about it is one of the many pitfalls of senior health care!

Brenda said...

Having worked in the nursing home industry as resident advocate, I totally appreciate this post.

You are awesome for taking on the role as caregiver. Not every one is able and some simply won't. The bottom line, however, is that our beloved seniors need loving attention, as well as ensuring their basic needs are met.

Melissa Wright said...

Happy 4th Brenda! Your Mom is really lucky to have such a thoughtful and caring daughter to take care of her. I find it very touching that you are looking beyond the sacrifices that you are making and considering what you can do to help her maintain her freedom and independence. I lost my Mom unexpectedly 3 years ago and while I miss her terribly every day, I am grateful that she was able to avoid the challenges that your Mom is facing with increasing limitations.

Much love to you and your Mom!

Sherry Hunter said...

Being a caregiver is one of the most selfless things a person can do and so very rewarding. I know what it's like to be a caregiver for I once cared for my son who is mentally ill w/ schizophrenia. It's the best "job" I've ever had and so rewarding. He's now in a state hospital because the illness became too difficult for me to manage him and his treatment.

Your mother is blessed to have you!

healthcare hostages said...

Brenda, thank you for your kind words. I can only imagine that a position as resident advocate in a nursing home would be very challenging! You would have people like me in your face all the time! I don't know if the SNF that mom was in for a short time even had such a position!

healthcare hostages said...

Thanks Melissa! Some days I think she might get tired of me being there ALL THE TIME, but we both have settled in to our roles and are handling the challenges as they present themselves while trying to anticipate what the next challenge will be!

I am so sorry for your loss of your mother. I have lived both sides of that coin.......my father passed away very unexpectedly when I was young. I also felt blessed that he hadn't "suffered", but the void was still there. But being with mom now makes me realize how much I never knew and will never know about my dad. I am grateful that I have the opportunity to fill the role of care giver for my mom.......I am learning a lot about both of us!

Thanks for your comment and kind words!

healthcare hostages said...

Sherry, yes it is very rewarding; exhausting; frustrating; and about every other emotion you can throw in there! I am sure that there are differences in caring for a child (I can't even imagine your struggles) and caring for a parent, but I suspect they are subtle differences. The thought process is still the same......this is someone I love that NEEDS me! I am sorry that you had to place your son in a state hospital, but I am certain that your "care" for them didn't just STOP at that point.

Thank you for your comments and kind words.

Anita Scott said...

You haven't had much freedom since this whole ordeal began sister. I love what you are doing for mom, but I really miss our trips!

healthcare hostages said...
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Diane Sue said...

I love the way you have connected the concepts of freedom and independence to best practices for caring for both our parents and for our children. Having a sense of freedom and independence is important to everyone, regardless of age or health status.

Your mom is lucky to have someone so understanding caring for her.

healthcare hostages said...

Thanks Diane that's very nice of you. I am very new to this, but finding it very therapeutic! Hopefully I won't be the only one that benefits from it!

healthcare hostages said...

ha ha! We still take trips silly! It's the sight seeing part that's changed! We use to climb water falls, now we look for the fastest route to the hospital cafeteria!

Anonymous said...

I think we should try to get together again in February 2014 for our sisters trip! By then, hopefully our momma will be able to go! That would be a great goal to look forward to.

Robert McGuire33 said...

Another great post Brenda. You are taking to this blogging like a duck to water. My wife and I moved in with my 93 year old mother a couple of years ago to be caregivers after she fell a couple of times. Once out in the yard and couldn't get up. The major issue is allowing her to maintain as much of the independence she wants and balancing that with safety and other concerns. I honor you for your labor of love with your mom.

healthcare hostages said...

You do realize that it's likely I might be a little preoccupied around that time, right? But, it does sound like a nice idea!

healthcare hostages said...

Thanks Robert! It seems like I have a lot of stuff jumbling around in my brain that I want to share and I spend a lot of time trying to figure out what the best way (in this platform) to do that. Kudos to you & Sandra for stepping up to the plate! It's not easy for sure, but can be so very rewarding!