senior heart attack, caregiver journey

The caregiver journey has begun. The next thing I know was my sister came rushing and was asking me what happened. She was immediately worried about the hospital bills as our Mom was in a private hospital. Yes, probably, we should be worried. I wasn’t thinking right. All I wanted at that very moment was to do everything to save my Mom.

How was my Mom doing?

Mom was conscious and that was good. She was given proper medication before she was transferred to the ICU. In the ICU, only one person could visit her from time to time but most of the time, she wasn’t allowed any visitors. That was hard. Days became tough for me as I worked at night and would have to rush to the hospital to check on my mom right after shift. Sleepless nights and exhausting days began.

How was I feeling as a caregiver?

It wasn’t easy. I felt like these were the darkest days of my life. There were times that I wanted to see my Mom but the doctors wouldn’t allow it. So I’d peak through the glass window just so I could see her. Tears would run down my face. I still couldn’t believe what was happening. My eyes were heavy due to lack of sleep and constant crying. My light, my inspiration is just right there but I couldn’t touch her. I can’t help her. I couldn’t believe it. Maybe I just couldn’t accept it.

I was exhausted, my brain was empty. Money was now an issue. My sisters couldn’t help. No one else will have to carry everything but myself. Often times I cried to my husband or I cried without saying a word. All the pain, the fear it was just haunting me. I couldn’t work well. I couldn’t sleep at all. I couldn’t eat. I lost weight. It was like I was the one hospitalized. I just didn’t care anymore. I just wanted my Mom back.

What else was going on?

On the second day of her stay in the ICU, we were told we were on a “cash-basis”. We needed to buy and pay all procedures and medicines for my Mom. I remembered sending an email to my employer asking for an advance. My Mom is sick and I am not able to pay for her care. What was I going to do? I’ve got the biggest responsibilities in this world right now. I was starting to get tired but there was never a moment that I felt I wanted to give up. All I wanted was to see my Mom standing and well again. I prayed. I prayed hard. But I have to be honest, I almost lost hope. I almost lost my faith.

I still had my job to worry about and my children at home. I was officially another example of the sandwich generation. The sandwich generation is those who have parents to care for AND children still at home. In my case, very young children. How was I going to mange everything?

Why would a caregiver question their faith?

With everything going on and no light to see, I remembered questioning my faith. Asking aloud, “Why haven’t you healed her yet?” ”What have I done?” I was blaming everything and everyone. In the world at that time, it was hard for me to say my faith was good when everything that was happening wasn’t good at all. I had become a caregiver questioning my faith.

 

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