If you are a caregiver...
...you likely find yourself stuck - between the needs, well-being and happiness of the
person for whom you care and your own.  You may struggle to have time for your children, your
spouse,  your job, your health care needs, your hobbies, and/or your own general well-being. The
list could go on and on.  You,  my friend, are sandwiched.  Synonyms for sandwiched included
"wedged, crammed, shoved and jammed" - not such positive words, are they? Welcome to the
Sandwich Counter, where you are precariously perched on a stool, wedged between the two
worlds,  trying to keep your balance and your sanity.

For many years, I was the Director of a large, statewide non-profit that served 
caregivers. I interacted with, learned from, and advised caregivers daily.  I knew of the term "Sandwich Generation" but I quickly discovered that it is not just about one generation or one age group.   If you are a caregiver, whether you are the 85-year-old spouse, the 43-year-old daughter, or the 19-year-old grandson, you are sandwiched.  Then, as fate would have it, I found myself in the role of caregiver for my own mother.   I began to experience the myriad of challenges and the range of emotions that I had seen in others.  I felt crammed and jammed between my mother and all of her needs and my own needs, my job, my husband and at times my sanity. I felt right there on the edge, about to lose my balance! 

In many cases, there are few resources for caregivers. In addition,  we cannot change a diagnosis, or the course of a disease.   We may not go back and stop an accident. But we can educate ourselves, find support, and develop coping strategies to ease the  emotional challenges . Whether you live with the person for whom you care, or live a distance away, whether you are new to the role of caregiver or have been  filling that role for sometime,  whether you provide all the care yourself, or you oversee the care - doesn't matter.    Each comes with challenges. and you are sandwiched.  This is now your new normal.  I want you help you with some of the challenges and let you know you are not alone.  

I know the pressure of trying to juggle so many balls.  Some days you feel you are the only one feeling what you are feeling, enduring what you are enduring.  You are confused and frustrated and stressed.  Sometimes you feel you just can't cope - you may lose your balance and fall at any moment.   

 

Here is the good news.  You are not the only one, you are not alone.  I hope I can offer some tips to help you on your care giving journey.   if nothing else, know I understand.

 

Thanks for taking the time to stop by and visit 

Sandwich Caring. 

Jane Marks

                                                   

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