Guess who gets lost in the stroke shuffle? CAREGIVERS – THAT’S WHO!
Doctors, nurses, and therapists are running around trying to sort the survivor out but the lowly, but critical caregiver, with few exceptions gets little attention.
But their life just has just changed, differently than the survivor, but none the less, significantly.
There are a few key things that Debbie, my wife, and caregiver has learned. And the most important is to maintain your work and life schedule, to the extent possible. (And I realize that this is easier said than done.) That meant for her, to continue with her teaching career and her exercise and most importantly, not to feel guilty about it. Because if the caregiver does not keep their health, mental and physical, they will not be able to successfully fulfil the caregiver role. And that’s definitely not a good thing for anybody.
That said, Debbie did have to facilitate many things that I could not on my own accomplish, particularly since I was aphasic at the beginning our journey. Rehab facilities, doctors, paperwork and insurance, managing my small staff at my nanny recruiting firm, appropriate therapists, assisting me with dressing, food preparation or bringing it in since we were living in a lovely place, but with few delivery services. Just many things, many seemingly small but to me, big – caregivers know the drill. I salute them!