Am I a caregiver or a housekeeper?
I'm sort of whining here, but I would like family input on my dilemma. I've been providing care for "Don and Ella" for several months now. Don has Vascular Dementia, and has recently suffered a full stroke and multiple mini-strokes. Ella has had a hip replacement and is recovering VERY slowly. Both are about 84. She's fiercely independent and proud. He is gentle, quiet, and a sweetheart. Both seem to love and appreciate me very much. Here's the thing; I am a CARE GIVER. From the first day, she had me doing a lot of housework, which I chalked up to her recent surgery. I work about 4 hours, twice a week. I've been doing vacuuming, dusting, floor care, bathroom cleaning, as well as cooking meals and baking. Getting the work load done in 4 hours means I'm racing. Very little time, if any, is devoted to caring for Don - which is what I specialize in. WELL- Yesterday I arrived to THE NOTE. The daughters, evidently, had decided "it was time" to have this in writing. OH MY GOSH. Clean out the refrigerator and wipe down all shelves, each shift. Vacuum every room, dust every room, all window sills, every shift. Steam clean all hard floors every shift. And the list goes on. The only caregiving on the list was to take Don for a walk once a shift. Seriously. As I said; I love them. I can only imagine what sort of conversation took place that led to a type written note. I know that I am an above-average cleaner, and I also know that's not what I signed up for. They hired me based on a referral from another care giving client's daughter. Yesterday I had brought supplies for, and planned, an activity with Don to engage him and help with dexterity. No chance to do this, as I was Holly Housekeeper all day. OH - ironing. I get to iron the pillow cases, handkerchiefs, and all clothing items including her SWEAT clothes. No joke. So, the daily task list is an entire typewritten page. I go back Friday.
I want to say - I'm not a maid, but I don't want to disrespect that industry either.
I go back Friday. Just want some input from families who hire caregivers.