This week, we are featuring Laura (@dear_dementia)! Laura cares for her mother who was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia. She is brutally honest about her experience as a caregiver and open to talking about her feelings and thoughts. Laura is relatable to so many caregivers as she shares her struggles balancing family-life, work-life, and caregiving. Enjoy reading her interview! Thanks Laura!!
Follow Laura on Instagram at @dear_dementia.
"The caregiving experience has taught me so much. I’ve learned that there are so many things I have no control over but I always have control over how I react."
"First of all, I can’t stress how important self-care is. I’ve not always done this over the years and I feel the difference when I do and don’t. Some of my favorite activities are writing (very therapeutic for me) and some form of exercise (a Zumba class or getting outside and going for a walk)."
"One memory that stands out is when my Mama was brought home by the police. My husband was working in the front yard and noticed a police car drive by. Then he noticed it drove by again. The third time he caught a glimpse of my Mama sitting in the front seat 🤦🏻♀️.
Apparently she had left the house and walked down to a school (which is just a few houses down). It was a warm afternoon and it was apparent to the staff who was still there that she was “confused” and they were worried about her being dehydrated. Of course I felt like “Daughter of the Year” because I hadn’t even realized she had left the house. We installed a latch on the front door after that day. She was totally fine so now it makes me laugh a little when I think about that day.."
"Knowing that you are giving someone you love the greatest gift: love, time, security, etc.."
"The guilt. It’s hard to truly understand what it feels like to be a caregiver unless you’ve actually been one. It’s complex and so many emotions are involved. It’s sometimes hard to admit but I’ve struggled with feeing anger, resentment and/or frustration at times. I try to be an amazing wife, Mama, daughter, friend, etc...I often feel like I’m stretched so thin that I’m not doing enough for anyone!"
"Laugh... whenever I can. You have to seek out the humor in the situations/challenges you face... I promise it’s there ;)."
Thank you for sharing your story with us, Laura!