View Full Version : Stress and Strain
04-12-2008, 07:26 AM
As we all know, stress doesn't help Lupus. Right now I am under a tremendous amount of stress. My father has been in and out of the hospital 6 times this year. I am afraid we are going to lose him. Yesterday we had to place him in a convalescent home. I held up in front of him, but it was like a knife sticking through my heart to see him cry as we left. I, also, found out my Mom was considered legally blind yesterday when I took her to her eye Dr. appt. I know all of you have your stresses and strains. I would very much like to here from others, as to how you cope. This caregiver role, plus all the other hats I wear, along with the Lupus, is killing me!
04-12-2008, 11:54 AM
First off, gentle hugs to you. I've been where you are now. Be kind to yourself. You can't help others if you are not helping yourself first. You can only give your best when you are feeling your best.
Keep the golden rules in mind for you yourself and the ones in your care.
- Rest when needed, not too much, not too little. (bring in the reserves to help you. Press in to service other family members, look for help from agencies designed to lend a hand, or vulenteer groups (seniors for seniors).
- Eat healthy. Quick simple healthy meals. Cook lots so you can freeze or have left overs when you are too tired to cook. www.cookinglight.com has great fast healthy meals.
- Rest you mind and work your body. MAKE time to exercise. Even if it's just 2o minutes a day. You need to move your muscles and joints in a healthy way to keep them strong and limber. It will aslo help to clear your mind and encourage sleep at night.
- Be vary aware of your problems in the sense that you can identify the ones you can "actually" do something about and the ones you cant. Let go of the ones you can't do anything about. Let a high power worry about those ones.
- The ones you can do something about, make a "simple" plan of actions. Enlist the family to help where ever possible.
- Avoid things that aren't good for you. Junk sugar ... did I mention junk.
- Find some humor in your life....Laugh (it's a great stress release)
My mother passed away suddenly, she had been ill but the doctor said it was just an upper resperatory infections. Three days later she had a massive heart attack and died. My father was an alcoholic and had cancer. He sold his house and lived in his car for 1 1/2 yrs.
I had to chase him down and get him in for surgeries and healed up. He'd stay with me for a while then with my sister then he'd disappear again.
I thought I was going to lose my mind. Then one day it all came clear. Take care of my self....feel good....do for him what I felt I could do and tell the other family members what else needed doing BY THEM.
With in three months we had him in an apartment, safe dry and fed. My stress level went way down. I started to feel better and life was much better for all of us. He chose to stay out of the hospital. He stayed in his own apartment with all of us (his children, and his brother and some of his inlaws) taking turns spending time with him and caring for him.
I feel what you are going through and my thoughts are with you. It one of the toughest things you will ever have to go through. I hope you have good support system around you. Lean on each other. :)
Welcome! How to deal with stress and strain, that is one of the toughest things we have to deal with. People don't understand what stress can do to us. I got away from anyone who caused me stress. I had people in my life who liked to create stress, for whatever reason I'll never understand. I got those people out of my life. I too wore many hats. I had to take off most of those hats, and just concentrate on the things that were absolutely necessary. I removed myself from as many negative situations as I could. I took the attitude that my health has to come first no matter what. I got a bit of an attitude about it, and have become very defensive, and withdrawn. I'm working on that still. Of course, there are things that are unavoidable. The situation with your parents is a tough one. My parents are now in their 70's, and although in good health, I know that sooner or later, they will have problems related to age. I dread the thought of ever having to put either of them in a convalescent home. You are going through some difficult times right now, but things can get better. Give yourself permission to be a little selfish. Enjoy a few guilty pleasures. I have a couple of hobbies that help me escape and relax. Pursue a hobby, or try something totally new. Let people around you know that there are certain times when you will not be able to do things. It's hard, and people can be unforgiving, but this your your health and well being we are talking about here. I guess what I'm trying to say overall is, don't feel guilty about taking the steps you need to take to safeguard your health, and don't let others give you a guilt trip because of it. It's all easier said than done of course, but if you work at it, you can adjust, and cope. Of course by all means come here and vent whenever you feel the need. This is the perfect place to find the understanding you may not get in your daily life. We all are dealing with Lupus, and understand things in a way healthy/non-lupus people cannot. Once again, welcome!
sick n tired
04-12-2008, 11:04 PM
Welcome to the forum. I am sorry to hear that you are having such a hard time...it was 18 months ago that I was standing by and watching my father die of barretts esophogus turned to cancer. It was very hard to be day and night taking care of him before hand....the last few months have found my siblings and myself trying to make decisions concerning my mother...I understand how hard it is to become caretaker.
6 years ago found me the main caretaker of my mother in law who had alzheimers...she has since gone home, too.....so I understand how bogged down and how it feels like you are drowning....the fear of losing and the having to make decisions that are painful.
Like Rob said...if you don't have any...get some sort of hobby...something that helps you relax...when my daughter was in the hospital recently...I started cross stitching...it was very cathartic for me...reading might be another idea....
I have found that this forum is a real release......there are some people who do care for you and will be there as a shoulder to cry on.....it has been a great help for me......
I understand the problems that you are running into with your Lupus and caretaking....my only suggestion is to carve out some time for yourself....... :roll: I know easier said than done........and at the moment I am being the "kettle who called the pot black" (one of my mamow's sayings).....it means that I don't practice what I preach....I have been putting others before me.....I am getting better and you will too because sometimes the lupus dictates. :(
So why don't you have a time when you run a nice bubble bath or get in a sauna (if you have one) put on soothing music... and veg.
I do that at times....make one night be order in night....and another be sub sandwiches night (you put all the ingredients out and the family makes their own) Just find some ME time even for a few moments or only a few moments every few days...that way if you know it is coming you can look forward to it.......
And by all means....come here to let off steam...that is what we are here for.