The Caregiver Cup Podcast

Caregiving Gifts From My Mom's End Of Life

October 13, 2022 Cathy VandenHeuvel Episode 130
The Caregiver Cup Podcast
Caregiving Gifts From My Mom's End Of Life
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Show Notes

I want to share this episode for anyone who’s loved one is in hospice and/or dealing with their loved one’s end of life.   It is one of the toughest, most exhausting and challenging times as a caregiver.  If you are going through this right now or are about to go through this soon or have gone through this, please know that I am sending you a huge hug and I also am telling you that you are providing such a beautiful gift to your loved one.  

As tough as this journey was, I learned so much about myself and have so many beautiful moments to look back on in that last month and most importantly those last 10 days.  

As I continue to process this journey, I am looking at the end to my Caregiver Daughter journey as a gift.   

  • I focused on gratitude for Mom’s caregiving team.  The hospice nurses, my siblings, her spiritual team, and the doctor consults behind the scene
  • Learned to ask for help and leaned on others.  
  • Self-care looks different - I couldn’t do my normal routine and really didn’t have the focus and energy.   I learned to grant myself grace and go with the flow.  
  • In challenging times we all react different.  
  • Accept your emotions.   
  • Set expectations and have those hard conversations
  • Embrace the amazingly good memories in the hardest of times.  

I know there will be more to reflect on and process as time goes on. 

When you start caring for your elderly parent, or your loved one with a terminal illness, you try not to think about those last days.   But they will come.   My hope is that you look at those remaining months, weeks or days as a gift you can give to them.  What things can you say or do to create some beautiful memories that will stay in your heart forever.   It can be as simple as kissing your loved one and sharing a few words with them.   It could be coming together with your siblings or friends and sitting by your loved ones side, even if the past wasn’t the most ideal.  You want to embrace the beauty of your caregiving journey vs the sad and ugly.  

You also want to grant yourself grace too.  You can’t be at your best if you don’t get some sleep, hydrate and eat.   Taking a shower with some music on helped me escape for a few minutes.  Eating on the patio outside my mom’s room gave me a mini break.  Whatever you can do - find a bit of self-care

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