A day in the life of a carer . . .

A day in the life of a carer . . .

She sits down to her computer at 7.45 pm, without knowing how long she has, she gets straight to work.  It seems like a day where she has achieved nothing in her “busy-ness”. Feeling satisfied yet exhausted, she slipped into bed at 12.30 am of the same morning, after administering the third and final intravenous (IV) antibiotic for the day to her chronically ill son.  Up until midnight, she had been supporting a couple of vulnerable carers online going through their own tough times. She woke briefly at 5.20 and ensured her husband had what he needed for his day at work. She dozed back off for a few more minutes of sleep. This is a typical day of a carer.  A carer, who at the moment, has a more intensive care regime for her son, who is undergoing intensive IV antibiotic and physiotherapy treatment.  He has Cystic Fibrosis.  They are two weeks into the treatment of a potential four week regime. A week ago they were fortunate to have the choice to take the boy home and administer this treatment from there. The family can then remain together. Hospital treatment means the family are separated for long periods at a time. Beep, beep, beep – the piercing sound of the alarm startles her yet just as swiftly it is put onto snooze – she steals another 10 more valuable minutes.  Eventually she rises just before 7 am and tries to wake the children on her way down to the kitchen.  The kettle boils in the background as she gets to work on preparing the IV medications. Today her youngest child is focussed...
The simple gift of giving

The simple gift of giving

Do you get to this time of year and wonder how on earth you can help your friend or family member who is doing it tough?  Perhaps you care so deeply but just don’t know how you can help them or make a difference?  You know you can’t change their circumstances but if there was only a way you can make their days just a bit easier….. THERE IS! For many of us Christmas signifies the time of year where we get to take a “break” from our job, even if it is only for a couple of days.  We take the opportunity to cast our mind back over the year that was and set new intentions, hopes and dreams for the year to come. While it is a beautiful time where we come together and celebrate, for caregivers and those who experience extreme grief and loss at this time of year, it is impossible to get into the spirit. There is simply NO relief in sight.  No real ‘new beginnings’, just more of the same.  Responsibility levels do not change,  often needs increase.  Emotions are run high and it can be a stark reminder of what they are missing, not what they have! WE HAVE THE POWER TO CHANGE THIS! Over the years I have spoken to many people and recently I surveyed people to find out exactly what would make a difference to them in their toughest times.  Here are the top 5  ways you can help out those doing it tough during holidays and every day: VISIBILITY & VOICE People simply want to be heard and...
3 Ways to Boost Your Energy & Clear Your Mind

3 Ways to Boost Your Energy & Clear Your Mind

Are you a carer or parent who feel’s like they are running on empty?  Not sure where the next burst of energy is or how on earth you will get through your day?  Perhaps you are surviving on regular coffee and sugary pick-me-ups?  It is such a common and easy pattern to get into!  I know, because I have been there. It is no secret that as busy caregivers we run the risk of burnout and exhaustion.  We have the best of intentions, trying to be and do everything for everyone.  Ensuring our loved one’s are taken care of, receive their treatments, medications and other therapies.  Taking care of the household, not to mention everyone’s mental health!  Many of us try to work full or part-time too.  The responsibility list can be unrelenting. Then BAM!! Out of nowhere you get sick, really sick.  It takes you a loooong time to recover, but you must keep going right?  Because no one will do the work for you. No one else can provide the level of care you can and do.  But when you are down and out, providing the level of care that you expect of yourself seems near impossible doesn’t it?  You tell yourself, I can’t afford to get sick.  Something has to give. YES SOMETHING HAS TO CHANGE!! In no uncertain terms, you MUST take care of yourself.  I know it seems impossible and a whole lot overwhelming.  It is ‘just another thing’ to put on your ever-growing list.  I get that, I do.  I have been there myself.  But I ask you this: While you are taking care...
Nourish Your Mind & Body in 5 Ways

Nourish Your Mind & Body in 5 Ways

To keep us at our best, we know how important it is to nourish our mind and body! We also know that in order to operate at an optimum level and perform everyday, we need to ditch the sweet sugary snacks, processed foods and reduce stimulants such as coffee.  These cause issues with your blood sugar levels, contribute to dehydration, will give you a ‘foggy head’ and will lead to adrenal fatigue (stress hormone).  This is not where we want to be.  I for one don’t want to be concerned about my health when I need to take care of the one’s I love. Check out my 5 strategies to help you nourish your mind and body below:   Hydration Consuming at least 2 litres of water per day is essential for normal bodily functions. Lemon squeezed in a glass of water first thing in the morning is a great way to wake up, is a boost to your immune system and your liver will love you for it. Fail to consume enough and your body will not be able to function properly.   Whole Foods It is no secret that when it comes to food, fresh and colourful is best. Vitamins/minerals, proteins, fats & complex carbohydrates are essential in our diet. Processed food has excess sugar & chemicals will negatively affect our health. These foods really do give us an abundance of energy, nourish every organ and contribute to clearer thinking and better overall performance.  Think fruits, vegetables (green leafy’s), complex carbohydrates, lean protein & good fats.  Flavour with beautiful natural herbs and spices and you are on to a...
NDIS complaints & Appeals!

NDIS complaints & Appeals!

Do you provide care for someone who is eligible to access the NDIS or do you yourself access this scheme? Did you know that under the scheme if you disagree with a decision you have the right to appeal or request review of these decisions.  In fact, there are 26 different grounds open to review. The Department of Social Services has commissioned a service to be provided nationally supporting people just like you.  This is a free service. Please see this excerpt from The Department of Social Services Website: NDIS Appeals Supports NDIS Appeals has been set up to ensure that all people with disability, and other people affected by reviewable decisions of the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), have access to support when seeking review of those decisions in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT).There are two types of supports available via NDIS Appeals: access to a skilled disability advocate who acts as a support person, and access to funding for legal services, where a case raises complex or novel legal issues. Support Persons are National Disability Advocacy Program (NDAP) disability advocates. They are available in every state and territory. A Support Person can help by: explaining the review process, including what is involved in appealing to the AAT; helping to prepare documents; providing advice and skills so you can better represent yourself, or attending AAT conferences and hearings to help you put your case to the AAT. While the focus of NDIS Appeals is advocacy support, funding for legal services is available where a case raises complex or novel legal issues. Legal services are provided by Legal Aid Commissions, which determine eligibility...