Caregiving During the Holidays: Have a Realistic, Positive Approach
here’s an image of holiday perfection that our culture encourages. Starting with Thanksgiving, we are inundated with images of families happily enjoying each other’s company during an idyllic holiday meal. Most of us have childhood memories that feed this desire for Norman Rockwell-esque celebrations. Even those who didn’t have these picture-perfect experiences growing up often strive to create them with their own families.
However, few of us can measure up to the fantasy—caregivers least of all. The vast majority of advertisements, music and blockbuster movies sugarcoat the holidays and shirk the reality that most of us face. These images feed expectations that are simply impossible to meet.
Today’s “average” family is vastly different from those of the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. These days, our families are often comprised of many generations, relations, races, and creeds. For family caregivers, elders’ various health problems, care needs, and living situations add to the complexities of bringing everyone together for the holidays.
None of these factors stops families from celebrating, though, and they shouldn’t. It’s just that we tend to carry memories…
Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories. “For anyone having to walk the last segments of life with a loved one, read this.” …Dolores