Take a breath
If you’re a caregiver, there’s a very good chance you take care of your loved one first and think of yourself last. However, as anyone who’s been on a flight somewhere will tell you, when the oxygen mask drops from the overhead you’re supposed to take breath yourself before you try to help someone else. The same applies to caregiving; this isn’t the time to stop taking care of yourself. Solutions for ways to find ways to take time for yourself and be more efficient as a caregiver may be as close as a class being taught by the Area Agency on Aging 1-B (AAA 1-B).
Powerful Tools for Caregivers (PTC)
This class meets once a week for six weeks for ninety minutes. Class size is also limited and there’s respite care if needed. What’s different about this class is the focus is entirely on the caregiver. The PTC classes focus on ways caregivers can take better care of themselves; relax and reduce stress; reduce guilt, anger and depression; communicate more effectively with family and medical staff; make tough decisions; problem solve; and be aware of community resources.
Each session begins with a follow-up on last week’s homework and ends with a relaxing visualization session. In between, there’s a lesson directed at the practical needs of the caregiver—along with group discussion about how they might apply what they’ve learned in real-life.
You’re not in this alone
As a caregiver, you might consider a good day one that’s tiring but where you feel a sense of accomplishment or have quality time with your loved one. A bad day may be one that’s exhausting and frustrating. These classes may not have all the answers, but they have many, and they just might help you have more good days. Call 800-852-7795 to register for either of these classes, or look on the site under Classes for Caregivers.