One of the most difficult issues a caregiver can deal with is the lack of control they have once caregiving begins. For someone who likes order, keeps a clean home, follows a strict schedule, or has to have control over their life, caregiving can be a shock. The fact is that caregiving is chaotic. Plans can be made, schedules adhered to, and the best intentions can be there, but illness does not comply. Despite the work that goes into keeping order, there is bound to be disorder.
The best thing a caregiver can do is to relax a little. Realizing that life gains a new meaning when it involves caregiving is a powerful first step. Some days will be a blur without a moment to catch the breath so desperately needed. Other days, the caregiver may find a peace in the unplanned moments that bring them closer to their loved one. There will be difficulties, and feelings of loss can take over when the caregiver realizes they have yielded their control, privacy, and social life.
These may not be an issues for everyone, but in many of the caregiving cases and stories I have read, it is common. It takes time to adjust to the new life that caregiving creates, and caregivers need to loosen the strings a little and give themselves time to adjust. The important thing to remember is that as a caregiver, you are taking on a serious responsibility, but also making a difference in the life of another. You are sacrificing, and gaining something in return. You are going to fall apart, but you are also going to pick yourself back up. Caregiving is a roller coaster, and you may not have control over the ride, but you do control how you handle it, respond to it, and any choices you make to change it.