When several family members are involved in a loved one’s care keeping up with who does what and when can be a challenge. That’s why it’s important to keep a master calendar that everyone involved in your parent’s care has access to.
To create a master calendar, find a template of a calendar online with plenty of room for writing. Go through the whole year, filling in any dates when you know you or your family members will be called on to help – for example, your Moms long standing appointment with her dentist or her weekly appointment with the physical therapist or the hairdresser. Also, make a note of specific times that you plan or need to be off. If you don’t have plans to be off, make some. Pick a week or two during the year and mark that time on the calendar – you’re going to need a break!
As various family members commit to handling specific caregiving duties, add their names to the calendar next to the time and task. Then, each month, email a copy of the next month’s calendar to all of the involved family members. Along with the month’s calendar, include an overview of the month’s ahead: your vacation next June during which your sister will be filling in for you for a week; your mother’s college reunion in August, which your brother promised to take her to; and your parent’s Thanksgiving trip, for which your Aunt promised to purchase airline tickets and arrange transportation to and from the airport.
ALEXIS ABRAMSON, Ph.D. is cited as America’s leading, impassioned champion for the dignity and independence of those over 50. Abramson is the author of two highly acclaimed books — The Caregivers Survival Handbook and Home Safety for Seniors. For more information go to www.alexisabramson.com.
Ó 2009 AJA Associates, LLC.