Taking care of Mom now that she's gotten older is so fulfilling. After all, she took great care of you for many years. However, it's not without its challenges and it's definitely hard work. So, realistically, you will need a vacation from time to time, without Mom. Although it's easier said than done, it is possible. Here are some things to keep in mind.
Don't Feel Guilty
You're not abandoning your responsibilities. When you decided to become the caregiver for your Mom, you knew what it would take and you were determined to be totally committed. Needing a vacation doesn't diminish your commitment, it's just a fact of life. If you don't take the needed time for yourself, you're putting yourself at risk for caregiver burnout. At that point, you won't be much good at caring for Mom's needs or your own.
Turn to Friends and Family
Have close family members and friends been telling you they'll help you out if you need a break. Maybe it's time to stop refusing and actually give them the chance to help out. Write down the names of who might be in a position to stay with her while you're away and discuss it with her first.
Consider a Licensed Caregiver
A licensed in-home caregiver will take care of your loved one in the comfort of his home and you can rest-assured knowing that your loved one is in professional hands. If this is your first time turning to a licensed in-home caregiver for services, it might be a good idea to set up one or two meetings between the caregiver and your loved one to make sure they get along well and your loved one feels comfortable in their care.
Know Your Loved One is Cared For
Leaving your loved one in someone else's care doesn't mean that they won't be cared for adequately. Whether you're leaving them with other family members or hiring an in-home service like Caring Senior Service to take care of your elderly family member while you're gone, rest assured that they will still receive high-quality care while you're gone. In fact, they might consider it a vacation, too!
For more information on planning your vacation, refer to our Caregiver Vacation Checklist.