My caregiver story is in the support of my fiancée during her time with kidney failure, dialysis (nocturnal home hemodialysis) and transplant.
The hardest part as a caregiver was dealing with the mortality of my fiancée. I could only do what I knew and what I could assist with.
My advice for other caregivers is to just being there for the person. I would want others to know that any amount of support/care you can provide is what is needed for the patient.. Your eyes, ears and voice are so important to ensure that the patient is getting the best care and support available, both in a medical facility and at home. Patience and communication are critical as well. You also have to be able to talk to others about your own feelings and experience. The weight of a caregiver does not have to be carried by the person alone.
Engaging and trying to understand what the patient is going through and experiencing using resources in a medical facility or peer groups is so important. Being an active part in the appointments and gaining knowledge of tests/appointments/procedures to help yourself understand which will provide the best care/support for the person you are caring for. It’s so important that the patient has you as a main part of their team.
My advice is to keep faith in yourself and do what you can do. Ask questions and do what it takes to achieve success in your health or your patient’s healthcare. Know that there are resources out there for the success of your health and the success of your loved ones health.
Just be there for the person you are caring for. You are a crucial part of their medical team. Your continued care will help provide the patient with the best life.