By Kirsty Porter
It’s such a funny thing we’ve started to say to each other, isn’t it?
“Stay safe and please look after yourself!”
If this image had sound, you’d hear very loud 90’s dance music. There, I said it – #vulnerablespace. This is what I do to look after myself. Funnily enough, I only remember to do this when I’m NOT stressed.
After a day of caring for my kids, my husband, the gorgeous cafés and listening to my lovely friends and family (who are also struggling with COVID restrictions), I find it so hard to find the time, or energy, to actually look after myself. And I hear from many people caring for someone with dementia, simply going to the toilet on your own or taking a shower without your partner wondering where you are, is pure bliss!
So how is it possible to look after yourself when so much of your time and energy is dedicated to looking after someone else?
This last Monday, I joined in on a webinar for carers and support people who are looking after a loved one living with dementia (hosted by VMCH with guest speaker Dr. Luke Smith, an awesome neuropsychologist *). I was taken-a-back hearing what their ideas were for self-care, especially from people who are, quite understandably, extremely STRESSED.
Some made me laugh, some made me cry. I learnt too, even the simplest ideas of self-care are forgotten when you’re experiencing high levels of stress. So, if I may, I’d like to share with you, some of their ideas for self-care and see if they resonate with you.
How do you self-care? How do you look after yourself?
Our friends who attend our cafés would love to hear from you. Give us your tips and trick on how to destress, how to lose some inhibitions and find a space to ‘just be’. Please share your ideas with our café members who are caring for their loved ones living with dementia.
Thank you and go easy.
* Definitely not a sponsored blog but we welcome all donations to keep our cafés open both online and face to face.