Many of us are caregivers, even if we don’t fully recognize it.
From having a child to worrying about an aging parent to supporting a friend who’s going through a tough time – a caregiver is anyone who sacrifices their time and energy to provide social & physical support for the benefit of a loved one.
Oftentimes, being a caregiver means wearing many hats – you’re an alarm clock, hairdresser, accountant, handyman, chauffer, launderette, counselor, advocate, breadwinner – roles that were perhaps previously shared but now lie on your shoulders.
It requires the ability to be flexible & ready, as well as to plan ahead, whether that’s a few days, weeks or years.
Caregiving can be lonely, exhausting, and relentless, but you do it for love, and the closeness and commitment can strengthen the bond.
An often overlooked responsibility of a caregiver, however, is to her/himself. When you’re focus is someone else, it can be easy to let your proverbial cup run dry. But you can’t fill from an empty cup.
As a caregiver, it’s critically important to manage your own wellness, and ensure you can continue providing care. Taking time for yourself is not selfish – refilling your own cup so you can help others is anything but.
Prioritize your wellness, and you can continue being there for those you love.