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I am grateful to be able to share what I am going through today. Of course I love my sister but it is hard right now. Part of my life is on hold. I schedule her therapy sessions and home nursing care and try to make time for me. I am taking baby steps. When she is taking a nap I go for a little walk. I am trying to figure out regular needs e.g. food shopping, banking, getting a haircut etc. I am not comfortable leaving her by herself. I know I need to work it out with someone I trust and that I know have had the Covid vaccine. It is difficult for me to let go. I need to find a healthy balance between me getting my errands done as well as meeting the outside world for a couple of hours and being there to help my sister whom I love very much. Things take time. I live One Day at a Time. Thanks for taking the time to read my post.

Imho, seeking respite whenever you can is part of any caregiving journey.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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You are correct in realizing that you need balance so that you don't become isolated. Getting the COVID vaccine will not prevent people from get the infections; it will lessen the likelihood of having a severe infection. Any person who helps care for your sister should be required to wear a facemask, wash hands frequently and keep surfaces cleaned. So consider asking family member, friends, members of faith community and paid help (sitter, agency, adult day program...) to help with her care.
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Reply to Taarna
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If you have the means to get someone in to help with her care, I urge you to do so immediately. The longer you do this 24/7 by yourself the harder it's going to be for her to let others help. I think the caregiver/patient get in to a routine and eventually the patient no longer trusts others to help because they do a certain task just a little different and may be scary. I also suggest start w/about 3 days a week so she is used to others and then you can vary that with your own needs - a day to get errands done, or for your own appts, etc.

This road is traveled one day at a time as you mention. What works today may not at all work in the blink of an eye.
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Reply to my2cents
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In the words of my incredible counselor..... “normal is a setting on a clothes dryer”. 😜 Figuring out how to balance our own needs with those we care for is not only necessary for our very survival, but it is also ever changing as our loved one’s condition deteriorates. Point being, get up each day and give it your best effort knowing some days you will do better than others. Accepting this as you new normal is a great first step! Also if it helps, know that there is a silent army of caregivers out here......as I read recently that in the US, that in any group of folks the average ratio of caregivers are 1 in 6 people. You aren’t alone in your battle for normalcy. God bless you on your journey!
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Reply to NeesaLee
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I am sorry you are going thru this with your sister. Be sure to care for yourself as well. Find peace in this journey. I wish you and your sister well.
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Reply to Bridger46164
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Your profile says that you are caring for your sister who has liver cancer. You now say also that you "fear" she is having some dementia. With advanced liver cancer you may well be looking at metastasis to the brain. Has your sister been diagnosed with dementia, or are you guessing? Are you her POA? Have you discussed the mental issues with your Sister's doctor? Have either your Sister or you discussed Hospice care, end of life care, and so on? Are there any plans for Hospice or Palliative care, or is your sister currently taking chemo to fight her cancer?
It is so difficult to take this on in the time of Covid. If you have moved into your Sisters home do you have your own family left in your home, or were you alone when you made this decision? Does your Sister have all of her paperwork done? Is your Sister able to afford the help of such agencies that may be there for say three hours a day three days a week or some such?
Such do wish you luck,and am so sorry for what you and your Sister are going through.
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Reply to AlvaDeer
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Your feelings are absolutely normal.

I am so sorry that you are going through this terribly difficult time.

Wishing you peace as you endure this struggle with your sister.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
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What you are feeling is completely normal. It's called being a caregiver. First I have to say, God bless you for looking after your sister in her time of need. I'm sure she would be doing the same for you if the tables had been turned. Secondly I must say that the most important thing you can do for yourself while caring for your sister, is take care of you as well. That does means getting away for a few hours to meet with friends for lunch or supper, going for a walk, going shopping and the like. It sounds like you know this already, but now it's time to put it into practice. You must hire some outside help in to assist with her, or you will burn yourself out, as you are discovering. There's nothing easy about being a caregiver. In fact I would have to say it was the hardest thing I have ever done in my 61 years of life. But I can tell you that the best thing I learned in my caregiving journey, was to take care of myself too. Once I really understood the importance of doing that, it made my caregiving journey much easier. You are just as worthy as your sister is. Please don't forget that.
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Reply to funkygrandma59
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xenwisdom Mar 1, 2021
You're the best! I had to say that to you directly. Thank you for your wisdom and beautiful advice for this young lady and myself and I'm sure countless others. I appreciate you on behalf of all of us struggling! Be well!
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I just read your profile--I'm so sorry about your sister's health. My DH had primary liver cancer and was able to receive a liver transplant and has had 14 more years with us. Not to be nosy--but it this a possibility for your sister? We didn't want to accept a death sentence on my DH--he was only 53!

While it was kind of unusual to transplant a cancer pt, since it was primary to the liver, it didn't metastasize.

My SIL was in Med School at the time, and watching DH go through all that he did to wait on the list, go through the transplant, and all the stuff afterwards--it end up sparking his interest and he is now a GI/Hepatologist and quickly becoming a really valued doctor here in our state. His input has been wonderful and so suportive. We're very blessed.

I think that what you are doing is fantastic. I wish you the best. I was DH's only CG, we never went through and agency or ever gave me a break, which was VERY bad planning. I have learned to take better care of me, b/c I am useless to him.

God bless you---I have certainly been where you are.

((Hugs))
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Reply to Midkid58
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