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Sharing the Joy

Merry Christmas! It’s almost here! I hope your day is everything you want it to be. So, how many times do you think you’ve said “Merry Christmas!” this month? Dare I say that after a few times, it became something of a throwaway line, like “Have a nice day” or the upcoming “Happy New Year!” Just how meaningful is it when you really don’t know if someone is having a happy day – or happy year! I pick out the parts of Christmas that work for me and enjoy them immensely. Whether you are having the best Christmas of all time or down in the dumps, I encourage you to do the same. Those caregiving elderly loved ones often think they get a pass to be grim and bitter about their situation, and view Ch

Time for a Little Self-Care

I got a massage the other night. Great! I’m one of those people who will leap at the opportunity to have a massage. For me, it’s all about the relaxation. I’m on that massage table and floating off on a cloud to nirvana even before the masseuse utters the words “light or medium pressure?” My massage the other night did not disappoint. But it was different, because for the first time, my motivation for being there was therapeutic. I had been experiencing some unsettling discomfort in my left thumb that seemed to be migrating to my other fingers, hand, wrist, occasionally the elbow. You get the idea. Nothing life threatening, but a pain nonetheless. My friends and family call me Dr. J because

Telling My First Big Lie

I told my first big lie last week. Nothing earthshaking. I wasn’t lying to Congress. I wasn’t lying to the police. I wasn’t lying in court. I was lying to…my elderly mother!!!! Yes, the time had come for me to begin telling, what is called in senior land, the “therapeutic lie.” What is the therapeutic lie? The therapeutic lie is a communication strategy increasingly showing up in medical practice in which an elderly person is deliberately deceived for reasons considered in their best interest (paraphrased somewhat from Psychiatric Times). However diabolical the tone of this definition, such a lie is usually told with good intentions, based on keeping the elderly person in a secure and stable

Is It Tiny House Time?

One of the most interesting – and, believe it or not, beneficial - things you do when caring for an elderly loved one is reflecting on what you see for YOUR future as somebody else’s elderly loved one. I have those thoughts more and more. Right now – and hopefully for the duration – my mom is living in her own home. Obviously it is a much calmer and more comfortable setting than that of an outside facility. But it comes with its own challenges, to be addressed by you know who. The landscape is looking kind of ragged – get out there and start trimming and weeding. The garage door is sounding creaky – time to oil it. The dust bunnies are sprouting – like rabbits. Somebody needs to start cleani

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