I AM CareGiver

First Respite Outing

After a couple week’s of paperwork, my respite care award/grant has been finalized. For 2019, I have 216 hours at my disposal, which works out to about 8 hours per week. For now, I’ve decided to split that into two 4-hour outings on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons.

My first outing was last Wednesday. I spent about a half hour meeting the manager and the caregiver, providing them each with an introduction to my parents and their conditions and needs. The manager was very forthcoming and gave me instructions on who to call for any reason — scheduling changes, report tardiness or no-show, and any other matter we feel a need to discuss. The caregiver, Katie, seems nice enough. She’s around 40 years old and has had private caregiving experience, primarily with children and young adults.

Off I went…. to do errands. Ho-hum. But, I had so many things needing done that have piled up, I just had to get them out of the way. Knowing myself, there was very little chance that I could, in good conscience, do anything “fun” and truly enjoy myself. I’d have that to-do list running through my mind the entire time, nagging me! So, I got to the post office, the pharmacy, the library, grocery shopped and hit the Wal-mart to stock up on sundries.

It was definitely nice to not constantly be checking my phone for a S-O-S call to return home.

When I returned home close to 5pm, all was well. Dad was sleeping, as to be expected. Mom was crocheting a baby blanket project. And I found Katie in the kitchen doing a little cleaning. She was sweet and offered to help my bring in the grocery bags, so we had a little more time to talk.

After Katie left, I asked Mom how it went. She kind of shrugged her shoulders, said she was nice but that she’d have to get used to her. Mom hadn’t asked for any assistance while I was away, but Dad had, and she reported that went fine.

All in all, a good start.


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