The first and perhaps one of the emotionally taxing steps in the eldercare journey is actually figuring out how to begin. It most certainly isn’t the easiest conversation to bring up. To make a comparison, it can be related to a family intervention. However, this conversation sets the groundwork to enable an easier transition when the time comes to assist in your loved one’s desired plan of care. Planning ahead ensures that issues are addressed BEFORE the time comes to become more actively involved, when emotions are driving the decisions that you make. This is the difference between being proactive and reactive. Emotionally driven decisions often miss vital nuances.
What can you do to prepare?
In the Eldercare Ready Book I discusses dealing with this complicated issue based on my own experiences. Ultimately, it is a path of action that needs to consider everyone involved based on the multi-faceted dynamics that exist in every family. I believe eldercare is a journey. As with every journey, prior planning is required for a smooth trip. In planning for the future it is essential that you have the information and tools necessary to alleviate as much stress as possible to enable a continued focus on the comfort and care of your loved ones. In the ElderCare Ready Book, I have outlined these issues in a comprehensive, step by step fashion that illuminates issues that may be overlooked if you are in a reactionary position. These steps include but are certainly not limited to:
· Management of Finances
· Purchasing of desired groceries and health and comfort items
· Home and lawn maintenance
· Managing medication and procurement thereof
· Tax returns and preparation
· Asset management
· Coordination of activities
Communicating these issues begins the foundation of eldercare and assists in enhancing trust between the caregiver and the ones being cared for. For many, it can be difficult to relinquish independence and place complete trust in another person, even a family member, to handle the most personal aspects of their daily life and assets they have worked their entire life to acquire. Addressing the issue before a crisis situation happens can make the transition smoother for all involved, and make the eventual journey that much more manageable.