How do I stop worrying and grieving?

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I am an only child of my last remaining parent. My mother is 94. I am 64 and just retired. I didn't think or expect to become a caregiver. It left me in a depression for which I am getting help. But everyday, when I go to visit my mother and do things for her, it hits me so hard that I will eventually be losing a parent and it's very sad to see her so old and getting age related problems, etc., I find myself worrying 24/7 and unable to enjoy myself and preoccupied with how to handle her issues and how to help her. Any advice will help. Thanks.

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Dear Angustia,

My deepest condolences and sympathies on the passing of your beloved mother. I'm so sorry for your loss. You are an amazing person for caring for both your mother and father. I know they appreciate your love and attention. It is overwhelming and I can't blame for having a break down. I did too. It can get to be too much but like you said I also have no regrets, because I honestly tried to do my best for them. Thinking of you during this difficult time.
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My mother just died, I have 7 sister, but they didn' have time for take care of my mother when she was sick, that was very hard for me because, I take care of my father too, he 92, I almost get brake down. now I have not regrets because I gave my life for my mom. and I would do again.
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Dear Bloomschool,

How are you doing now? Its so hard to think about our parents aging and needing more and more care. I hope you can find the right balance.

For myself, I wish I had asked for help sooner to manage my anxiety and anger about having to be my dad's primary caregiver. Since my dad's passing I have more regret and guilt then when he was alive. I know everything is 20/20 in hindsight.
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Yes, you WILL get through this, it's a window of time (we don't know how long the journey may last) that we choose to give to our parents and you will have comfort having no regrets for the many years after they're gone. Very difficult, yes!!! Worth it, yes!!! Precious invaluable time right now! !!!!!
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Thanks for the all the great advice. I guess there' s is no escaping this part of life. I never imagined I would have to go through this. It never ever, entered, my mind! And that I would be alone with no family to help. Even though I do have a sister who "divorced" us years ago and wouldn't lift a finger to help. I am sure I will get through this, but as we all know, it's d*mn hard! Thanks. :)
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Dearest bloomschool: I feel for you and can relate. When my mom could no longer live alone (after many medical issues as well as mid-stage dementia), she could not live with us because of the stairs. I had to find a place for her (skilled nursing facility) because at this point she was in a wheel chair and was not well. With the wonderful place I found for her, she got a little healthier. I had my own family to care for at the time and was dealing with breast cancer as well. I was fortunate enough to have my family for support, but I was like an only child because my only sister (no brothers) died after her third child was born. She was 24 at the time. When I needed help with mom, my sister's children (grown with families of their own), did not come around much (they said that she wouldn't remember anyway). I dealt with mostly on my own, and saw her decline rapidly. It was very hard to watch, but I was with her after work and weekends almost every day so she wouldn't be alone. Even though it was difficult, I wanted to be with her as much as I could because I knew that it wouldn't be long before I wouldn't have her anymore. My dad died when our oldest son was 2, so I could focus on her without having to worry about another parent as well. I tried to focus on the good times each day and be with her in the past because that was where she was most of the time. She talked about things like it was when she was young. She would ask me why I didn't remember so and so and finally I would just pretend. I could not get her to understand why (I wasn't around then - born many years later), so I just went along with her. It made her happier and less anxious at the time. I was with her when she took her last breath (one of the hardest things I ever had to do), and I sometimes still have a difficult time trying to forget that, but most of the time I focus on my family and the good times of the past. I hope you will be able to remember good times as well, and just remember to keep yourself healthy, take time for yourself because then you will be able to cope better. It is definitely not an easy thing to go through, and doing things for your parent takes a lot out of you, but in the end, you will know you did your best and have no regrets. God bless you and your mom. I hope this little bit of sharing helps you in some small way.
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bloom: You may to see a psychiatrist, who can give you an RX for an anxiety med. I know...been in your shoes and it's very hard.
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BlackHole There are always exceptions about our parents not having to care for someone for years. My mother took care of my sick siblings for over 40 years. My father was a caregiver until he was 90 years old.
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You asked how not to worry. I always quote something Michael Fox said once when asked about his Parkinson's disease. "If you always focus on the worst case scenario, and it happens, you have lived it twice"

I used to imagine that when my Mom died that I would just fall apart, simply give up and eventually commit suicide. I'm not exaggerating. Well its been a year and a half since she died and I am still here. I miss her terribly. Some days the pain of her loss is so strong that it physically hurts, but I am still here. You'd be amazed at how strong you are. When my Mom started to disappear before my eyes I found reserves of strength I didn't know I had. You will be fine.
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It was hard for me not to worry and grieve while I took care of my father. It is sad to see your parent becoming frail and sick and you can't stop it.
Going to church helped me.
Try to watch something funny on t.v. I asked my daughter if we should be laughing. She said laugh or cry. I would rather laugh; you can cry later.
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