Many people these days have to be responsible for their jobs, their kids, and their parents and it is having a profound affect on their daily lives. One of the last things they are able to think about is themselves and it makes it difficult to continue the pace that lies before them. As someone who has had to face this challenge and continues to balance four generations with the advent of grand kids, I have found a wonderful community that has the infrastructure to help all the generations in our family.
We were lucky that we had a great community with outstanding facilities close to where we had lived for a good while. However, we did spend some time looking for a home that would give adequate care to my elderly mother. In the beginning all we needed was an assisted living facility but as time has moved on we have had to move her into a full care facility. It has been great to have everything we need in our local community.
Our daughters and son were able to complete high school and college and go on to start families of their own very close to us. We live in an area that is large enough that we are not always in each others business but close enough to be together whenever we choose to and for those special family holidays, so it works out really well.
I know for some in this situation it is a very different story, whether it is lack of funds to afford help or just the inability to live in an area where there is sufficient care. For those family's this situation can be one of extreme stress and many of them have no where to turn for help or are so busy they do not ask for help. If you know of someone who is taking care of an elderly parent as well as their spouse and children, you may want to offer some time to help them with even the most simple of things; grocery shopping; picking up cleaning; taking or picking up kids or just help clean up around the house or yard.
It is hard for some people to except help from others but if done with an open heart you can really be of help to a family that is most likely in great need. If I did not have the support that I have been able to receive in my community I do not think my family would have made it this far. I still call on friends who have trucks to help us move my mother when we have had to move her from facilities to hospitals and back, as well as getting breaks from time to time when I have had to spend nights with her. Knowing my children and grand children are safe and cared for is also a blessing.
Because of the help I have received over the last ten years I do not feel like I deserve any medals for doing what I could for my mother. However, I have seen others who have had to do it on their own and I can say that they are angels on this earth.
If you are someone who knows you will be faced with this situation in time, I highly recommend you start making calls now to find the facilities and care that you can afford. You can also check in with your church and other churches in your community to see if they can help you find a suitable place where you can obtain some much needed help. If nothing else, get plenty of rest and take care of your health as you will need both. Let your friends know what is happening and what you are anticipating. There is nothing like having good friend to help you from time to time, and they cannot do that if they do not know you need them. The reality is that every community should be a community for all ages. If we all pitch in, they can be.