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Caregivers in Hunters Creek TX: The Caregiver's Marathon

Caregivers in Hunters Creek TX: The Caregiver’s Marathon

Every day, family members cope with the challenges of caring for ailing parents and spouses

by Sue Dremann, Palo Alto Weekly Staff

Bea Crane, 69, had a good life in New Orleans. She ran a hammock shop near the French Quarter; jazz, bistros and friends surrounded her.

Then her life drastically changed. When Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005, she survived by swimming through muddy floodwaters, which rose to the second-story stairs. Given the choice between being robbed and diving into the unknown dangers lurking in the water, “we took the water,” she said.

That same year it wasn’t a natural disaster but rather a familiar human concern that turned her life upside down. She came back to Palo Alto to care for her mother, Blanche Frith, who is now 101 years old. It is the caregiving, not the hurricane, that’s left Crane feeling as if she’s drowning.

She’s not alone. Family members frequently take on the all-consuming responsibility of caregiving when loved ones age or become ill. Some care for frail parents, others for an ailing spouse. Sometimes the infirmities and attendant responsibilities arise gradually; for others, a medical emergency alters life overnight.

The task is daunting, caregivers said.

“Some days, it’s a blessing to get insight into my mother. But there are times when you think you just can’t handle another minute,” said Crane, a perky, outgoing personality.

Roughly one third of all U.S. households provide care for a chronically ill, disabled or aged family member or friend, spending an average of 20 hours per week, according to a 2009 report by the National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP.

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For information about caregivers and how they can help you care for a loved one at home, contact At Your Side Home Care at 832-271-1600.

Donna Wrabel, LMSW

For most of us, the word "home" evokes warm feelings of comfort, security and well-being. For older adults, home also means holding tight to cherished memories and maintaining self-esteem and independence. When illness, injury or age make life a little more challenging, remaining at home in a comfortable, familiar environment encourages recovery and enhances the quality of life. Home can be defined as a private residence, an independent or assisted living facility or even a short term stay in the hospital, we recognize the additional benefits provided by a personal, professional assistant.

Our Certified Nurse Aides, 24-Hour Live-in Assistants and Home Health Aides are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We also provide the security and confidence of 24-hour Telephone Assistance, so fast, reliable help is always available when it's needed. To learn more about our homecare services see our homecare services page.

Different people need different levels of homecare. To meet the requirements of our clients, At Your Side Homecare maintains consistent staffing levels of caring professionals. Homecare service is available for as little as a few hours a week, or as many as 24 hours a day, seven days a week