I was always a "pull up by my bootstraps" kind of girl but I feel alone these days with caregiving.

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I was always a "pull up by my bootstraps" kind of girl. I am having to do that alot lately, but after reading many of your posts, I am feeling more greatful than I was before. I try to keep a positive attitude, but sometimes it just wears on you - as you all know. I have a wonderful supportive husband, I have 6 helpful children (5 still at home), they always step up when I need them - whether I am spending 17 hours a day at the hospital or just doing the weekly errands with Granny or running the household. Four years ago, we moved my grandmother to an assisted living 1/2 mile from our home. She started in a nursing home and as she got healthlier we moved. These were her decisions and she is a joy to care for. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in June and has had it removed and has decided not to take radiation, but will take Arimidex to block estrogen.

This has been a turning point for me. I am feeling overwhelmed and sad and very alone these days. Both of Granny's daughter's live in other states and my mom helps when they come - usually for a month at a time. I do take that time for my family and try to catch up on stuff, but I am still the "main caregiver" and the relationships change and that is always stressful. But I am greatful.

I feel guilt when I am away from home, although my family understands the need and never complains. I fight anger some days that this all falls on me. Right now I am just feeling very alone and that is what brought me to this sight. You can try to explain to your husband, your kids, your mom, your friend - but unless they are involved in the daily care and decision making - they just don't get it. Even when my mom spends a month - it is like vacation with Granny - not the daily routine.
Thanks for being here.
Laura

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LAURA
You are so right we can not be perfact and do it all that to me was the most important thing I had to learn just doing ok most of the time is good enough-I certainly won't have Martha Stwert visit any time soon and the fact your kids have friends over to visit and eat meals means you are doing great- kids will not come over if it was not a great place to hang out. When our kids were young one of their friends could not have kids in their house because the mother had just cleaned and I was working full time and that mother did not work.
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My grandmother does not live with us, she lives down the block at an Assisted Living Facility - which was a great place 4 years ago when she moved in, but now puts more of a burden on me since they are understaffed and aren't caring for the residents the way that they used to. It would kill her for sure if she was living in our house - 5 kids and at this moment 4 other neighbor children are here eating. My husband is working at the moment - brief due on Monday. The one thing that all of this has taught me - I can't do it all. If my house is not perfect, so be it. I want it to be a welcoming place for friends to come and hang out. That was a difficult lesson. I am also learning that all I can do for my grandmother is love her and be available and sensative to when she needs to get out and about, go to lunch, go get an ice cream, whatever. I follow her all over Wal-mart so she can "drive". I love that - I hope I have 1/2 as much energy when I am 91!!! As many of you know - even if you aren't THERE caring for them at that moment, they are always in your mind. Just like being a parent!! I saw an interesting study the other day about how we talk to our seniors - in "baby" talk for lack of a better term. They said that this makes them angry and makes their illnesses progress faster. Even if they can't voice their displeasure. I try to always remember that Granny is my elder and that she still makes her decisions - regardless of what I think and I need to let her continue to do so. We will all just deal with each day and each moment as it comes.
Laura
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Laura,
Nice to meet you. You have your hands full for sure. My mother moved in our home about 2 years ago. I have only one child left at home and she is 22 and gettig married next month. I do not see how you do it with five children still at home. Bless you!!!
I completely understand where you are coming from about the family not understanding you. My family does not understand either. I try and talk to my husband, but I just get a bump on the log look. He says I know it is hard but does he really. He comes to me for every little thing it drives me crazy.
This site is wonderful because you can vent and we all completely understand what you are going through. Yes I also am a "Pull up by your boot straps" I was taught that by my mother. But there are days that you just can't do it anylonger without having someone to talk to. We are here to listen.
Please come back
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Laura
I'n not sure I understand-does your Granny live with you and your family- that is what it sounds like. I always was a pull yourself up also but when the demands on your time are so overwhelming it is impossible to do that. You get pulled in so many directions it makes you crazy. Just think of all you have to do; you have a husband, five kids at home you take care of Granny, run a house shopping cleaning ect. get ready for your Mon to visit and with Church and bills and paperwork and being a wife I don't know how you manage. Our family members usually do not understand because you do it all and they don't see what a toll it takes on the caregiver. You need to pat yourself on the back.You are a wonderful person for taking this on and not letting your own family down. Please keep in touch- I find verbalizing on this site helps to reduce our stress greatly.
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