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My mother is in hospice care but seems like she is no where close to really dying. I took a leave of absence to take care of her thinking that she was going to live a short amount of time. That was 5 months ago. Five months of no income. She deteriorates to the point where I think there is no return, but then she bounces right back like a rubber ball. She has had several rebounds and they are killing me. I feel like I am on a roller coaster that will never end. I love my mom but I am SO ready for her to die, just so I can have my life back. I feel like there is no end in sight. How can I retrain my thoughts to be positive instead of feeling like I'm in total despair?

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I would add to stay away from extremely negative people. They will make the depression worse. I can’t stand Pollyanna types either. Find people who are balanced.
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vickic Mar 13, 2020
I loved taking care of my Mother she was the world to me now that she passed I am lost enjoy your Momma.
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I am struggling with this issue myself.  I've considered an anti-depressant.  I agree with some of the other posters that this could go on for years...you just don't know.  Going back to work would not only help you financially, but it would give your mind a chance to focus on something else for part of the day.  Can you get care for her during the day while you're at work?  Or are you up all night with her as well making going back to work not an option?

My mom has dementia and we are on year 8 with no end in sight.  She is physically healthy otherwise.  Watching the end of someone's life drag on and on is hard...especially if they have no quality of life, it does make you pray for it to end.  I'm sorry you are dealing with this and I hope you can figure out some way to return to work or at the very least get someone to relieve you for part of the day so you can catch a break.
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helenb63 Feb 14, 2020
My mother too has little quality of life but not for physical reasons; she is quite healthy for an 85-year-old who won't do any exercise at all yet has somehow survived two lots of lung embolisms and pneumonia. Her problem is narcissistic personality and being unhappy wherever she is, and having a totally negative, self-centred view of the world. Without this she could be having a nice enough life. Her negativity is spreading to us and we are all getting depressed, but can't see a way out of it. This situation could go on for years and that scares me a lot, as I'm not sure I - or my marriage - can take it.
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I love my Mom and am grateful for every moment I get to honor her and keep her, but hear me. My beautiful Mom was hit hy a car 3 yrs ago walkimg into a local grocery to get ingredients to make a pie for a neighbor. She suffered head trauma and it accelerated the dementia we did not know was forth coming until doctors said she had onset verrry early stages that would have taken yrssss to get where it is now, but due to the accident and head trauma it could advance. It did. Then my Dad cared for her 2 yrs during which time i had just retired...so i went back and forth from my home to theirs 4 hrs away every 6 to 8 wks. Mom was indep and could do a lot, still. Then I noticed my Dad getting tired...realll tired...so i moved back and in the one year I have been back home in my hometown and living with them...my sweet momma has had 2 major strokes...One major stroke and one massive stroke. She had totally recovered and 9 mths later had a massive stroke...Icu 11 days.
Rehab 14.. As my Dad and i were leaving day 14 to get mom home ...my dad had sudden numbness as we were leaving and i called 911. He was in icu 5 days. I got mom home and my sister came. A neighbor helped me get her home and her husband went with my dad. My sister came snd stayed 14 days. We had to learn to use the peg...which is tube to care for mom...Dad learned a virus must have attacked his heart 10 to 15 yrs ago without him knowing and all these yrs...only a third of his heart has been alive. That virus killed all but a third of his heart and he never had one symptom or weakness for all these yrs until a gentle warning sign recently. They put a defib vest on him and he has worn it 60 days. He is a sweet man and helps me a lot...He has a defib implanted in two weeks. Dad is amazing. How can it be?? He played avid golf for yrs...GOD IS GOOD. I spent 4 days in a row last week bathing mom multiple times daily due to diarhea from meds. It got difficult...because it got everrrywhere.....Day 4...i burst into tears. Mom looked up and said..."I will pray for you." That melted my heart. She was the verrry best mom ever. She took good care of me when i had rheumatic fever at 7 yrs. I had a moment of grief and i stood there looking at my sweet mom and the poop and my sweet daddy with his heart monitor and i realized i was grieving for them and for me. I said..."Lord...thank u for my precious parents." I wiped my tears...hugged them and realized i needed to get out and start exercising again...but u get so drained and talk yourself out of it. I do get out some and eat out...but i find nothing works better than walking 20 min a day...outside and at the gym. I keep it simple. I also realized this is just one small season of my moms life...Mom has to have assistance walking and eating. I journal often...walk daily and take drives...I find peace in just keeping life simple and quiet within right now. I pray a lot and pray for others...in my prayer journal. I.paint and draw...because i started a new hobby in doing so. The sweetest part of our day is when we tuck mom in each night. Dad kneels and prays on one side of her bed and I kneel and pray on the other. Then mom prays. It is a beaautiful time and sight. Dont leave God out of your sorrow. Rather than me feeling my life has been taken from me...i see my present season as a new calling. A teacher for 31 yrs and youth leader in ministry 2 yrs...after retirement and now, at 55 yrs..care giver for my precious folks in thrir season of greatest need and love. I fight depression and grief...myself...i miss my life!!! But...i see it as a season of quiet trust and soul.searching and service. I have monents i feel despair...and my sister named those "sinking spells" and we will tell each other we are having a sinking spell and step away a few hrs and renew. I keep a gratitude jourmal as well...which may be a drawing or news clippng some days. My sister is 4 hrs away. I am here by myself. She cones asneeded
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Harpcat Feb 14, 2020
Although the first part of your post made me wonder how this would help the OP, I got to the end and really liked what you wrote. It was insightful and a different way to look at a situation such as yours. May God's mercy be yours.
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I went through almost 9 years of ups and downs, the last two really taxing with my bedridden mom. Then I had a one year break where I barely got my footing back before SIL living with MIL died and my husband now the only offspring thrown right back into caregiving for MIL, 89. for the last 3 years. That makes round two up and down limbo. They deteriorate, you brace for the worst, then they rally. On it goes and the roller coaster is stressful and taxing. I watch others go through parent care and after they are gone they go on to fulfill dreams and make plans, enjoy their retirement, and they sure let me know how great life is for them.
I was so burnt out during my mom's care I couldn't even fathom doing much else. A neighboring city may have well been on the moon. I would look out windows and see planes fly and feel imprisoned. I never let the parent know how bad I truly feel. Now, I am at least researching other cities and places, , places we may want to go someday if we are not too old by then. Some days I am hopeful, some days I am really depressed, I get through this by learning about places and watching sports, doing little things and grabbing any moment for myself if and when I can, even if it is just a good cup of coffee or tea. Compartmentalize...one day at a time and keep believing there is a door at the back of this dark room and one day it will open and our parent will find peace from the rough times of decline.
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I know your pain, I'm in the same situation but not on hospice. I am the ONLY child caregiver. Dementia, stroke.. immobile and full 24/7 care and strict commode schedule. It is now 2 years on-going at home. I'll spare you the details because the answers on here resound everything I've been going through. I have a fulltime job, kid to take care of and doing this. The days are beautiful but I can't partake in it. I have lost friends but I don't want to socialize - and they don't want to come over to see mortality for what it is. High anxiety day and night. How I cope... I take walks before the day ends, I take Epsom salt (magnesium) bath as the magnesium transdermally helps with anxiety and calms, I also drink this stress releiving tea that contains Ashwandga. This together works overnight to the next day, and I have a burst of good feelings so that I can focus on life. Suntheanine and GABA supplements 2x a week gives a boost of good feeling. I do tend to go out when I can, even for a drive or to Starbucks, can't imagine how restorative that is, just to see, smell and feel fresh air! To see life go on so carefree as my life stands still....
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Reply to Southern20
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I don’t believe this has to be an either/or situation. Since your mother is on hospice care, speak with her nurse to find out if it’s possible for your mother to have home care while you work. It’s not good for you to be without an income for that long. It’s most likely impacting your pension and health care as well. It’s also not a good situation for you mentally. Speak with hospice and share your feelings. Hospice is there for you as well as her.
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Vivian711 Feb 12, 2020
For some reason, I can hear your voice and I like you.
Great advice you give.
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No answer, I'm afraid, but I just want you to know that you're NOT ALONE, and I'm right there with you!!!! It's NOT a good place to be and, YES, it IS quite depressing to say the least!
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You have to plan for yourself. It can literally takes years to recover from caregiving.
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You gave up your life for mom's. Start regaining balance. If you can, want, and need to work - do so. If mom needs round the clock care, get help from family, friends, church, and/or paid help. Start going out again to socialize with family and friends. Bring mom on outings when you can or ask people to come over for meals.

Depression and loneliness are cousins. Loneliness is treated by getting together with others - especially where you can feel useful. Depression is darker and a little harder to treat. Treating depression takes many forms with varying degrees of success - medications, light therapy, exercise, cognitive behavioral therapy. Start with treating yourself for loneliness and if that doesn't help... see your doctor.
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Make a plan for yourself. Spend your space time (evening after bedtime?) and research and learn everything you need to know...start putting an action plan together.

plan out your life, work toward achieving that goal.

staying busy and working toward fulfilling your own life goals...that is how to beat depression brought on by feeling stuck in you situation.

i spent years learning everything about RV life. Decided I needed to build one for myself....that was a massive undertaking...filled every night for a year researching all the details. I spent about 4 hours a day actually working on the RV once I bought one and gutted it.

after my parents died (within 1 year of each other)...I finished the RV and have been full time on the road ever since. I went to Alaska and Mexico and every place in between out west. Spent a year in Florida. I am currently in Arizona, and plan to visit the Canadian Maritimes this summer.

find your plan for the rest of your life...and take steps every day toward achieving it.
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