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I am so tired and so scared. I nearly had another freezing episode this morning.
I am seeing a therapist
I started yoga
I hired a home aide as I work. But then there is still too much on my shoulders.
I am scared that what I said joking a couple of years ago will actually happen. She will live to be 100, I won't reach 50.
Dear friends died last year, and the thought came back...
I would like to live my life...
The trigger this morning was something so stupid I am nearly ashamed for my crisis... But I am just burnt out.
I was preparing a Tiramisu (a desert) when she asked for the bedpan as she needed to poo...
Which she didn't...
I know it is l stupid but I so wanted to prepare something for son and husband for Easter

Anche, I have no idea what's available in Italy, especially in terms of additional home care or alternate living facilities.  But I do have a cousin who married into an Italian family, and know how tight they in terms of family relationships.  

Are there any cousins or other family members who could provide some relief?   Does the local community government offer respite?    Anyone from your local church?   I know that the pandemic limits some of these options, making it even more challenging.

Even if not, are you able to set aside some time for yourself each day, either before or after work?   This sounds simple, and I know it's not, but if you can create some down time with your mother, when you just talk, or listen to music, then you're both relaxing.   

Yoga is an excellent relaxation and diversion technique; so is music, and so are flowers.   I have displays of artificial flowers in every room except the bathroom, and every time I see them, I'm calmed more than I was before.

I wish I could be more helpful; I've been through some experiences like this, and music was always my first "go-to".     One aria that always took me out of my world was La Donna e Mobile, sung of course by Pavarotti.    I felt like I was soaring when I listened to him.   

I found a video and presumably audio (I don't have speakers set up) of a young Pavarotti, with all his charm and tremendous talent; take some time and listen to him spread the beauty of opera.   I hope it relaxes you.   But don't soar; we don't want to read that you've fallen trying to fly as your listen to this beautiful aria.

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=La++Donna+e+Mobile&view=detail&mid=38EA03BCB75C58DEEC3F38EA03BCB75C58DEEC3F&FORM=VIRE0&ru=%2fsearch%3fq%3dLa%2b%2bDonna%2be%2bMobile%26form%3dIENTHT%26pc%3dEUPP_DCJB%26mkt%3den-us%26httpsmsn%3d1%26msnews%3d1%26refig%3d1ffda9d0c4094ae2fe5f457fb09c80eb%26sp%3d-1%26pq%3dla%2bdonna%2be%2bmobile%26sc%3d9-17%26qs%3dn%26sk%3d%26cvid%3d1ffda9d0c4094ae2fe5f457fb09c80eb
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Anche71 Apr 4, 2021
Thank you GardenArtist, I do have cousins willing to help but as you said covid is making everything more difficult. We are in lockdown here at the moment. A cousin leaving close comes to bed wash my mum: she works in a hospital so she knows how to do it.
But of course they all their lives and I don't to ask for too much.
I love music, I used to sing in a choir and our director is a soprano singing in the Verona Arena choir. I went there with mom years ago to watch the Carmen by Bizet and then with my husband to watch Aida by Verdi.
I am also a soprano.
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Do you have siblings? If so it's time for them to step up and do their part. It's not fair for them to expect you to do it all.
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Anche71 Apr 4, 2021
No I am an only child...
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Anche, tell us why you think a good care facility will "kill" her.

It's a common misperception.

You are one person. With a job and a family. No ONE person can care for an elder like you are doing.

Your needs are as important as your mother's.
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Anche71 Apr 4, 2021
I always thought that if she had dementia or actually needed medical cares 24h/24 I would look for a facility.
She is beginning to forget recent things and repeating anedoctes from the past.
But she is still rather ok with her thoughts.
I am afraid that taking her out of her house would worsen her situation. Our doctor would not even recommend a rehab facility.
I just hope she will be able to walk again.
I even considered renting a small flat near our house for her to live with a 24h home aid.
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First, Happy Easter!!! I pray you will get to enjoy the day with your family, Tiramisu or no Tiramisu.
Second, you MUST take time away for just you, to do things you enjoy, even if it's just taking a walk around your neighborhood, or going to lunch with a friend. It can be simple things, but their value is priceless when it comes to restoring our attitude, and rejuvenating our souls.
Third, it may be time to be looking into other care options for your mom, like placing her in the appropriate facility, where she will receive the 24/7 care she needs, and you can get back to just being her daughter.
And last but not least, please take care of yourself. Your mom would not want you jeopardizing your mental and physical health to take care of her. You have a lot more living to do, so now it's time to do what is best for all involved. May God bless you and keep you.
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Anche71 Apr 4, 2021
I have been thinking about a facility but I am afraid this might "kill" her...
On the other hand going on like this is going to "kill" me.
I take time for myself but then I can never relax my mind... As an only child and caregiver I am in charge of medicines, I give her not only pills but even injections... Everyday... Documents, doctors...
I do jot know which would be the best solution for both of us.
And my husband and son...
I have been crying the whole morning and still am crying...
Thank you for being here...
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Thank you Barb! Your version of tiramisu sounds delicious!
I so understand what you mean!
Yes we have an elderly home not far, I also get in touch with one for a respite period this August when we will be on holidays. But because of the Covid pandemic they still do not know if they will take people in.
About aging parents and children I just said this morning that having a child was my decision and desire so it is not the same, not as many people see it. I never wanted my mum to be ill... And to go through this. I don't want my son to ever go through this.
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Oh Anche! It's NOT stupid!

I think part of what makes caregiving so hard is the mistaken notion that we should enjoy doing it, that it's a blessing, and honor and other hogwash.

The only thing as far as I can tell that is the same about parenthood and eldercare is that it is hard, backbreaking unpaid labor that the world expects women to do with a smile.

It is inconvenient and it gets in the way of the stuff that we WANT to do.

Your frustration is valid and understandable.

Are there homes for the elderly in Italy thay might provide a solution when the pandemic is over?

I SOOO miss making tiramisu for big family celebrations. I sometimes make an unorthodox version where I substitute a fruit based syrup for the coffee and add white chocolate to the mascarpone/egg/cream.
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GardenArtist Apr 4, 2021
Barb, well said, especially the comments about what women are expected to do.    But, as the slogan of the Women's Movement expressed, "We've come a long way, Baby!"

I was thinking the other day how much women have progressed since I first began working, when choices for careers were primarily, education, nursing or secretarial.   Now women lead corporations.   And  many are mayors, governors, and elected representatives, not to mention heads of state.
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