Chapter 1: The juggling act

Introduction

Funny how everything falls away from what is happening here. I make plans; the universe overwrites them.

Whether you are caring for someone at home or providing occasional care in hospital, hospice, or other facility, you will likely be juggling several responsibilities. These may include working, looking after children, caring for aging parents, cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry, as well as the added responsibilities of looking after the person who is ill.

People react to these competing demands in different ways. Below are three common reactions.

  • They find work or other responsibilities energizing and consider them a break from caregiving.
  • They find that juggling work and caregiving is too much to manage. They may reduce work or find additional help for home duties or caregiving responsibilities.
  • They experience stress and anxiety because they cannot afford to leave work or may have limited resources or options in caring for someone or for getting help.