There is no better feeling than to see the babies you’ve given birth to interact with the wonderful people who gave birth to you. There is an irreplaceable love that instantly forms from the moment they gaze into one another eyes. So what happens when you need to become caregiver of not only your kids but your parents too? What I would suggest are to pray, get rest and try your hardest to find balance.
During my 2 month hiatus, my mother fell ill. Not only was it stressful worrying about my mother’s recovery, but also finding a way to be present for everyone including my kids, sibling, parents and spouse. Being at the hospital until late, picking up my children, cooking and still maintaining a decent household very quickly took its toll. As a woman, we have a propensity to keep going and going until we become physically and mentally tapped out. Once I became noticeably agitated and exhausted I knew it was time to make some alterations. I had to set specific times to visit my mom at the hospital, allowing me more time to spend and truly enjoy the company of my husband and children without feeling overwhelmed.
Of course being at the hospital, I wanted to make sure my mom was being cared for properly. Once I was satisfied with the care, it made it easier to sleep at night knowing she was in good hands. I also learned to accept help from family members and close friends who had experienced similar occurrences in their lives and wanted nothing more than to help and be there for my mom and family. This made it easier to devote more time to my children and husband without the guilt of not being present at the hospital 24/7 and it was necessary for my own mental stability.
I also learned that though I wanted to be everywhere and do everything, it wasn’t possible. I had to take time out for me which would consist of me relaxing on the couch watching the latest tv show or alone time with my husband watching a movie. Just recently my wonderful husband surprised me with tickets to see Janet Jackson which was a GREAT and much needed date.
Though I’m still learning how to cope with being a duel caregiver, I have been taught by others who have walked this road before not to feel guilty for taking time for yourself. It’s not only desirable but necessary. As my aunt told me, “you can’t take care of anyone else if you don’t take care of yourself first”. If your lucky enough to have parents as great as mine, taking care of them is something you take pride in because of the morals they have instilled in you and the opportunities they’ve made possible. Love and honor your parents remembering that everyday is not promised so cherish every moment and never EVER take them for granted.