Tag Archives: Caregiving.com

Sharing The Light


Christmas is a season not only of rejoicing but of reflection. Winston Churchill

Richard and I  had a Christmas Eve tradition where he would make a reservation at one 20161219_220258of his favorite restaurants for Christmas Eve dinner and then we would take a ride down A1A in Palm Beach and Broward Counties to look at the spectacular Christmas lights adjacent to the Atlantic Ocean.   We would always marvel at the tremendous configurations of lights as we motored down the road.   A palm tree wrapped in Christmas lights is something you just don’t see in Brooklyn or St. Louis.  I’ve made the same trip down memory lane the last two Christmas Eve’s and plan to do the ride again this Saturday on Christmas eve 2016.

It is amazing to me that I am approaching my third Holiday Season without Richard. (I use Holiday only because Richard was Jewish and I am Catholic)  My,  how time does fly!

The first Christmas without Richard was difficult.  One of the events that got me through the ride was Caregiving.com 36-Hour Christmas Care Chat.  While chats are available just about 24/7 on Caregiving.com, this chat was special, at least to me.  I will never forgot the kindness of the volunteer, @RoaringMouse,  that Christmas Eve in 2014.   We chatted for I guess almost an hour, we laughed, we cried, we reminisced… we were just there for each other.   Thanks to my chat with @RoaringMouse  I understood that while this ride would be different, the ride  would be just as meaningful as it was the year before when Richard was sitting next to me in the passengers seat. @RoaringMouse helped me  realized that I really was not alone on that first Christmas without Richard.

Caregiving.com 36-Hour chat starts this Saturday at noon and will continue on through midnight on Christmas night.  “Volunteers who understand” just like @RoaringMouse, will be there to lend support,  and be there for you, no matter where you are on your caregiving journey.   I know I will never ever forget, and will be forever grateful, for my time with @RoaringMouse on Christmas Eve 2014.

wpid-wp-1419525603576.jpegSure,  that old cliche’ is true, time heals all wounds, but wounds heal in their own time.  Each one of us adjusts differently when the one we love makes their life transition.  My mind tells me that he is forever pain free, my faith tells me that I will see him again, my heart tells me he will be sitting right next to me on our drive on Saturday night.

Sometimes in order to move forward,  we just have to look back on our past. 

Visit Caregiving.com to learn more about the 36-Hour CareGiving Chat and how you might be able to participate.

No matter where you are on your caregiving journey, you’ll be glad that you stopped by for a cup of comfort.

when-you-need-comfort-when-you-need-companyour-36-hour-caregiving-chat-1

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Caregiver Call In Show: How Do You Manage Long Distance Caregiving


Join Denise Brown from Caregiving.com and me tonight (September 25th) on Blog Talk Radio  for our monthly Caregiver Call-In Show for a conversation on long distance Caregiving: What’s it like to care for a family member from a distance?

Call us at (646) 652-4944 during tonight’s live 30-minute talk show which airs at 8 p.m. ET (7 p.m. CT, 6 p.m. MT, 5 p.m. PT). Share your answers to this question: What’s it like to care from a distance?  To join our chat room and to listen live, simply click here! 

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Join us in Chicago on December 2 and 3 for the First Annual National Caregiving Conference hosted by Denise Brown at Caregiving.com.   Complete a paid registration for our First Annual National Caregiving Conference on or before October 1, 2016, for a chance to win a free night (Friday, December 2, or Saturday, December 3, your choice) at the Chicago Marriott O’Hare.

To learn more about our conference click here! 

 

National Caregiving Conference Flyer

 

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Sunday August 28: Two Great Family Caregiver Events


 Join us on Sunday August 28th at 8 p.m. ET  on Blog Talk Radio for our monthly family caregiver call in show as I will be co-hosting with Denise Brown from Caregiving.com.  Our topic for Sunday’s show is “Dealing With The Daily Grind.”  To listen in and join our chat room log onto www.blogtalkradio.com/caregiving .    Guest call in line:  646.463.7486 to

FIRST CALLER RECEIVED A COPY OF MY BOOK: “What’s The Deal with Caregiving?” wpid-wp-1448113432219.jpeg

Twitter ChatAfter our call-is show is finished, take a half-hour break and jump over to Twitter for #carechat:  Sunday, August 28, at 9 p.m. ET (8 p.m. CT, 7 p.m. MT, 6 p.m. PT). Join us to connect and share with others who care for a family member or friend.

On Sunday, we’ll discuss how to balance work and caring for a family member friend. As part of the curriculum in order to graduate from Caregiving.com Certified Caregiving Consultant training program, I will lead the discussion on Sunday.  Interested in becoming a Certified Caregiving Consultant?  Final class of 2016 commences September 5th.

These questions will guide our discussion:

Q1.: What is your biggest obstacle balancing work and family caregiving?
Q2.: Why might it be beneficial to self-identify at work as a family caregiver?
Q3.: What are your fears in regards to self-identifying at work as a family caregiving?
Q4.: What is more difficult: Missing an important work meeting or an important doctors appointment. Why?
Q5.: How can your employer make your family caregiving journey easier for you?
Q6.: Is quitting your job the only solution?
Q7.: If I could change one thing about work and caregiving it would be…
Q8.: Why is a work-place caregiving support group important?

To take part in our chat, go to tweetchat.com, sign in with your Twitter credentials and follow our hashtag: #carechat.

Be sure to follow Chris on Twitter: @thebowtieguy and Denise @caregiving

CCC_CHRISInterested in becoming a Certified Caregiving Consultant?  Visit Caregiving.com for details by clicking here!  Final class for 2016 starts early September.  Use the coupon code Chris to receive 20% off the cost of the course!

Join us in Chicago for the 1st Annual National Caregiving Conference on December 2nd and 3rd.  For information on how you can be a sponsor orNational Caregiving Conference (1) exhibitor, email me at chris@thepurplejacket.com. Visit Caregiving.com for all the conference details by clicking here! 

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Monthly Caregiver Call-In Show


Let’s Talk About: When We Want to Run Away

Each month on the last Sunday at 8 p.m. ET, we’ll pose a question that sparks a conversation we’d love for you to be a part of. You can give us a call during our live show at (646) 652-4944 to share your thoughts. You also can join the show’s chat room and discuss your experiences with other listeners. Listen to our show and join the chat room.

On July 31, we’re discussing this question: When do you want to run away? When do you feel intimidated or overwhelmed or frustrated or just done that running away seems your own option? Call and share your stories and experiences. Be sure to share how you stayed.

Join Denise Brown from CareGiving.com and her co-host, Chris MacLellan,  Sunday July 31st at 8:00 pm eastern / 7:00 pm central on Blog Talk Radio as  we talk about when we just want to run from caregiving. Please feel free to call us during our 30-minute show! 

12144764_10207087416960465_5072855123559877099_nAbout Chris

Chris is the author of “What’s the Deal with Caregiving?” and the host of “Healing Ties,” a weekly radio show. You can learn more about  me on at  www.thepurplejacket.com and www.thebowtieguy.com.

d_cp6Qzj_400x400About Denise

Denise, founder of CareGiving.com, coaches family caregivers before, during and after caregiving. She’s the author of “The Caregiving Years, Six Stages to a Meaningful Journey” and “Take Comfort, Reflections of Hope for Caregivers.”

Join us in Chicago for the 1st annual National Caregiving Conference #NCC16. Looking for exposure for your products and services for Caregivers?  We have sponsorship and exhibitor packages to meet your needs!  Contact me direct at Chris@thepurplejacket.com

National Caregiving Conference (1)

To learn more about the conference click here!

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Top Caregiver Conferences


We are pleased to welcome guest blogger, Jacqueline Hatch from Seniorly.com to The Purple Jacket.

Top Caregiver Conferences

By Jacqueline Hatch

Caregivers deserve a much support as possible when it comes to caring for aging loved ones. It’s a difficult journey, filled with unexpected obstacles and a mountain of responsibilities. Many family caregivers refer to the experience as an emotional roller coaster. Fortunately, the caregiving community is as supportive as they come. And there are caregiving conferences all across the country designed to support these individuals in their role. And whether you’re new to the role or a seasoned professional, conferences can help you connect with others in a similar position and gain tools to help you better prepare to care for those you love. Read on for the top upcoming caregiver conferences in your area:

Upcoming Fort Lauderdale Conference(s):

The Fearless Caregiver Conference on October 20th, 2016

This upcoming conference will cover important topic areas including how to become a fearless member of your loved one’s care team, respite techniques for caregivers, expert advice on beating stress and other mental health concerns, and hands-on advice from local experts in the field. The conference will be held from 11:00am to 3:00pm on Thursday, October 20th at the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Registration is free.

Upcoming Florida State Conference(s):

Florida Conference on Aging, August 8-10, 2016

This August, the Florida Council on Aging will hold a conference focusing on topics surrounding the aging experience. Attendees can expect engaging workshops on topics including caregiving, health care, technology, elder advocacy, fundraising, long-term care planning and more. The event will be held from August 8-10 at the Caribe Royal Hotel in Orlando Florida. Chris MacLellan will be leading a workshop on August 8th entitled “LGBT Caregiving: Is There A Difference?” Register now so you don’t miss out!

Upcoming National Conference(s):

1st Annual National Caregiving Conference, December 3rd, 2016

The first of its kind, this conference aims to connect caregivers with support and solutions to empower them in a difficult role. Presentations are designed to be engaging and entertaining, and spark conversations about changes that need to be made to support caregivers at home, in our workplaces and our health care system. Educational sessions will be aimed at family caregivers, former caregivers, and working professionals. The event will take place on December 3rd at the Chicago Marriott O’Hare. Chris MacLellan, “The Bow Tie Guy” is honored to be attending as a presenter and part of the steering committee.

Additional Caregiver Resources:

The National Alliance for Caregiving

Family Caregiver Alliance

The Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving

Caregiving.com

For more caregiver resources to support you in a challenging role, visit the Seniorly Resource Center and search by keywords “caregiver support” or “caregiving”.

Jacqueline Hatch is the Content Manager at Seniorly.com, a company that provides free resources for families in need of senior care services. Her goal is to produce educational articles that help families navigate the complicated world of aging options. She does this through managing the Seniorly Resource Center, where families can search for relevant articles based on topics and keywords.

 

 

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New Call In Show: What’s Life Like After Caregiving Ends?


Whatever words we utter should be chosen with care for people will hear them.  Buddha

Starting on Sunday, June 26 8 p.m. ET,  (and every 4th Sunday of the month) Denise Brown from Caregiving.com and I will début a new monthly call in podcast for caregivers.   We’ll pose a question that sparks a conversation and  we’d love for you to be a part of the conversation.  You can give us a call during our live show at (646) 652-4944 to share your thoughts. You also can join the show’s chat room and discuss your experiences with other listeners.  To listen to the show and to join the chat room, simply click here!  

On June 26, we’re discussing this question: What’s life like after caregiving ends? Be sure to call us and tell us what it’s been like for you. What’s been difficult? Easy? What’s surprised you? Who’s surprised you? And, let us know what you worry about as you look into a future without caregiving.

About Denise
Denise, founder of CareGiving.com, coaches family caregivers before, during and after caregiving. She’s the author of “The Caregiving Years, Six Stages to a Meaningful Journey” and “Take Comfort, Reflections of Hope for Caregivers.”

About Chris
Chris is the founder of the Whole Care Network , author of “What’s the Deal with Caregiving?” and the host of “Healing Ties,” a weekly radio show.

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Denise Brown, CareGiving.com

Chris MacLellan

Chris MacLellan 

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Dec. 3 in Chicago: 1st Annual National Caregiving Conference


The Whole Care Network and The Bow Tie Guy is excited to be part of the 1st Annual National Caregiving Conference Dec. 3 in Chicago:

chicago-890354_640Organize a caravan for your support group members. Create a car pool with your co-workers. Plan a get-away for you and your caregiving friends.

And, then come to Chicago in early December to connect, share, support and learn at our 1st Annual National Caregiving Conference.

Our conference will take place on Saturday, December 3, at the Chicago Marriott O’Hare, conveniently located minutes from O’Hare and a subway ride from downtown Chicago. Feel free to spend the weekend at the hotel; we’ve got a special conference room rate of $119. Our conference begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday morning and wraps up at 5 p.m. You can spend Sunday shopping or sight-seeing.

The goal of our conference is to connect you with support and solutions; empower you with insights and information; and entertain you with engaging and enlightening presentations. We also want to spark important conversations about what we need as family caregivers and former family caregivers in our communities, our workplaces and our health care system.

You’ll want to attend our conference if:

  • You care for a family member or friend;
  • You cared for a family member or friend;
  • You work with (or want to work with) family members, either in your own business or in an organization or agency;
  • You offer products and services for family caregivers.

Our conference will include an exhibit floor and educational sessions featuring three separate tracts:

  • Family Caregivers: Connect with others who care for a family member; attend sessions which speak to your experiences and gather resources which help you manage the experience.
  • Former Family Caregivers: Connect with others adjusting to their life after caregiving ends and attend sessions which help you enter the next phase of your life.
  • Professionals Working With Family Caregivers: Connect with others who work with family caregivers, either through their own business or in an agency or organization. Gain insights into the caregiving experience which will help you work well with family caregivers. In addition, learn marketing techniques to help you reach family caregivers.

The tentative cost for family caregivers and former family caregivers to attend is $10. The cost for those who work with family caregivers is $50; we’ll also offer CEUs. Your cost includes breakfast and lunch as well as access to our sessions and exhibitor floor on Saturday. You’ll pay for your travel expenses, including your hotel.

I’m working to create respite options so your caree receives care while you take a break. I’ll keep you posted.

Look for a call for presentations on July 5. Presentation proposals will be due August 2 and we’ll notify you if we’ve chosen your presentation on August 23.

We’d love to get a feel for how many will attend our conference. Please let us know via the form, below, your interest. We’ll also send you regular updates, including information about sponsors, presentations, special activities and exhibitors.

Follow this link to the form to submit your information.

http://www.caregiving.com/2016/06/dec-3-in-chicago-1st-annual-national-caregiving-conference/

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Webinar: Working and Caregiving Survey Results


e6d06522-963a-4fad-8fa6-11992d1bee66I was most thankful to participate in Caregiving.com  annual Working Family Caregiver Survey earlier this year.  Your participation helped me earn my masters degree in Leadership and Communication from Gonzaga University in Spokane Washington.  On Thursday, June 9th, join me with Denise Brown from Caregiving.com for our webinar on Working Family Caregivers as we discuss the results of the 2016 survey.   Follow the link below to register for a reminder for Thursday’s webinar via Caregiving.com: See Denise Brown’s post below.   See you on Thursday!

Topic: Second Annual Working and Caregiving Survey Results

Day and Time: Thursday, June 9, at Noon ET (11 a.m. CT, 10 a.m. MT, 9 a.m. PT)

A 2012 report released by AARP found that 42% of U.S. workers provided unpaid eldercare for a family member or friend over the last five years. And, 49% expect to do so in the coming five years. Caring for a family member is a workplace problem.

To better understand their experiences, we asked working family caregivers to share in our Second Annual Working Family Caregiver Survey. We partnered with Chris MacLellan (@thebowtieguy), who used our survey results for his thesis. Chris is the author of “What’s the Deal with Caregiving?” and the host of “Healing Ties,” a weekly radio show. You can learn more about his work on his website, www.thebowtieguy.com.

Join us for this 45-minute webinar during which Chris and Denise M. Brown, founder of CareGiving.com, share the results of the Second Annual Working and Caregiving Survey.

Register to receive a reminder for our webinar below.

 

Register to receive a reminder for our webinar below by following this link: http://www.caregiving.com/caregiving-webinars/webinar-working-and-caregiving-survey-results/

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Graduate: A Thesis Complete


An investment in knowledge pays the best interest. Benjamin Franklin

The road to Spokane has come to a happy ending with the completion and acceptance of my thesis entitled… Spiral of Silence:  Caregiving, Stress and its Impact in the Workplace.   

Originally proposed by German political scientist Elisabeth Noelle-Neumann in 1974, Spiral of Silence is the term meant to refer to the tendency of people to remain silent when they feel that their views are in opposition to the majority view on a subject.  My theory suggested that working family caregivers, fearful of losing their job, do not self-identify at work because they feel that they are in the minority.  I am happy to report that 75% of the respondents who indicated that they did self-identify at work found some form of relief.  However, 25% of the respondents who did not self-identify at work as a family caregiver, were fearful of losing their job or that self-identifying would be of no help to them.  I am very grateful to Denise Brown from Caregiving.com for allowing me to take part in Caregiving.com yearly working family caregiving survey.  Please feel free to reach out to Denise Brown at denise@caregiving.com if you have any further questions about the working family caregiving survey and how you might get a copy.

Of course there is much more to the thesis; we have more work to do to bring awareness to the epidemic of stress that working family caregivers face on a daily basis.

It is difficult to find the words to describe the feeling of earning a Master’s Degree GU_logoin Leadership and Communication from Gonzaga University. I love the Jesuit tradition and the spirit of Gonzaga. Professor Michael Hazel has been terrific throughout the entire process, as have all of the staff at the University. I will always remember Dr. Hazel’s sage advice at the beginning of the thesis in January, when my goals were bigger than the time frame, “The best thesis is a completed thesis.”  Michael Hazel knows his “stuff!” It is a good feeling to have the thesis completed, an even better feeling to now be an alumnus of Gonzaga.  It is nice to know there are life-long friends in Spokane, WA.

11410888-smooth-road-ahead-good-times-recovery-yellow-street-sign-1is84y6I am getting ready to embark on a new road, (one that is not virtual as was my road to Spokane); I look ahead with anticipation and excitement because I am creating a life to love after caregiving ends through writing, radio, travel and advocacy.

Leave your limiting self-doubts behind and go and grab the life you have always dreamed.

That is my new road to follow!

Chris MacLellan is the author of “What’s The Deal with Caregiving” and the executive producer and host of “Healing Ties” radio show  and a alumni of Gonzaga University!

 

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It’s All About Forgiveness


To understand is to forgive, even oneself. Alexander Chase

The road to Spokane is in its final stages as there are only two chapters left to write for my thesis “Caregiving, Stress and its Impact in the Work Place.”   I owe a big thanks to Denise Brown from Caregiving.com for helping me gather statistics for the thesis.   I had two hypothesis to prove in my thesis, so far the data tells me that I was able to prove one of them.  I will be sure to reveal the results of the study in May after the thesis has been approved and submitted.

20160323_081923.jpgWhile attending the American Society on Aging Conference in Washington, D.C., I was struck by not only the information that delivered at the conference, but the commitment of the professionals in attendance.  Another added benefit was the chance to connect with quite a number of social networking friends, people who I have collaborated with of the years online, yet have never had the opportunity to meet in person.  I was fortunate to be able to attend this event.

Something hit me square in the eye while in Washington, D.C. that is difficult to explain, but quite profound.   During one of our discussions at the conference, I suggested to the group that there is plenty of information for caregivers and those who are in the  aging profession, but I did not see much information on life after caregiving ends.  (A few eyebrows where raised when I made this point!) Yes, there is an estimated 43 million family caregivers today in the United States, but what happens to caregivers when caregiving ends?   Do family caregivers just go back to  daily life without recognizing, or better yet, dealing with the dramatic change in life when caregiving ends?

I had to look inside my heart for that answer.  And for me, that answer centered around forgiveness.

In order to fully grasps and move on with life after caregiving,  I had to first forgive myself, forgive myself for moving on with my life.  Seems strange after all most two years past Richard’s life transition, but yes, life after caregiving has to include a bit of self-forgiveness.   I then had to  forgive myself for the bad decisions I made during and especially after caregiving ended.  I had to forgive myself for not taking better care of myself both physically , emotionally, spiritually and financially.  But most of all, I had to forgive myself for being afraid to continue on with my life after caregiving ended.

HealingProjectYou see, caregiving was just a small portion of our life together.  Time wise, eleven years together, pales in comparison in relation to the six months of intensive caregiving that transpired in our relationship.  However those six months of intensive caregiving takes a relationship to new heights, new destinations and at least in our case, a deeper love and commitment that is impossible to replace.  I marvel, and often wonder about couples who have been together 30, 40, 50 years then suddenly find themselves in the role of a family caregiver.

Our time in caregiving ends: Our time in love is endless. 

For me, life after caregiving is about learning to forgive myself. When I came to the realization that I had to first forgive myself in order to fully move on with my life, a little bright light went on in my head, (thanks to a wonderful conversation with my friend Sam Chalfant) allowing me to understand and accept, that living in the past does not help the present, nor the future: living in the past puts life on hold.

Just like our caregiving journeys are different, so will our journeys be different when caregiving ends.  Sharing our stories after caregiving ends is just as important as it was while in the midst of caregiving.  Because in the end, somewhere along the line, forgiveness, in some form or another, will be part of the healing formula for each one of us to experience, so that we can fully embrace our life once again after caregiving ends.  Sharing is caring… before, during and after our caregiving experience, so  that our hills are light, and with a gentle breeze always at our backs.

Chris MacLellan is the host of “Healing Ties” radio program and the author of “What’s The Deal With Caregiving?”

The road to Spokane is my virtual story leading up to graduation from Gonzaga University

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