Hi Everyone, Recently About Seniors sponsored a caregiver symposium which featured experts in the field of Alzheimer’s, dementia, hospice, legal issues involving caring for someone with dementia, emergency care and caregiving in general.  As we would expect, everyone on the panel that day agreed that “stress” is the main issue for family caregivers who are on call 24/7.  How to deal with this stress to prevent the caregiver from becoming the patient, was a key issue.  The caregiver MUST have a break regardless of how brief that might be.  What can that “break” look like?  I have a list here of “Lucky 17” (St. Patrick’s Day inspired) ideas for you to try, or make it your bucket list to use to try one or more each day in the month of March.  Here goes:

1.  Laughing so hard your tummy hurts.
2.  Take a hot shower.
3.  Go for a drive on a pretty road…..Hassayampa Preserve is an easy drive or the White Tanks.
4.  Listen for your favorite song on the radio.
5.  Lie in bed listening to the birds outside.
6.  Putting warm towels out of the dryer up against your face.
7.  Find an article of clothing you like on sale for half price.
8.  Make a chocolate milkshake. (or vanilla!).
9.  Take a bubble bath.
10. Go to a support group where you can have a good conversation.
11. Laugh at yourself or the silly things that can happen in a day.
12. Invite a good friend over to visit.
13. At the mall, play with a new puppy.
14. Have someone fix your hair.
15. Make chocolate chip cookies…..if you have a toaster oven, you can buy premade mix and cook one cookie at a time!
16. Just sit in a chair or couch holding hands with your loved one…..even if it is only a couple of minutes…..and just breathe.
17. Watch the sunrise with your loved one and realize you have been given another beautiful day.

Have a wonderful month.  The weather is warming, and just step outside to let the sun warm your face.  Take care…….Regina