Thanksgiving Special: Saying Thank You to your Caregiver

Thanksgiving Special - Parkinson's

Home care for a Parkinson’s Fighter can be a stressful job, typically when it deals with great disability. It’s natural for caregivers to feel overwhelmed by managing doctor appointments, medications, basic care needs, and household tasks. Thanksgiving Day is just around the corner and can be the perfect opportunity to share your kindness and appreciation for your caregiver. Here is a step-by-step guide to express your gratitude towards your caregiver in a stress-free, creative manner.

Get help a few days before

One of the greatest gifts you can give a caregiver is to shorten the list of things they need to take care of. Hire a temporary housekeeping service to help him around the house few days before Thanksgiving. A much-needed break can allow your caregiver to rest and recharge.

Housekeeping chores are never-ending and easily overlooked when you are fighting the non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s on your own. There is a certain peace of mind that comes with knowing he doesn’t have to worry about all pre-Thanksgiving chores.

Invite him over

It’s natural to ask your caregiver (if he is paid) to take a leave if your friends or family is visiting you on Thanksgiving. However, the best way of expressing your gratitude is inviting your caregiver for a dinner at Thanksgiving. There are certain things which you should think before inviting him to the Thanksgiving dinner. If you have grand kids at your Thanksgiving party, they should be quickly educated on the caregiver’s background.

Share experiences

Thanksgiving dinner prayer and exchanging words of gratitude within the family are usually an integral part of Thanksgiving celebration. However, you can change the tradition this time. At the core of a patient-caregiver relationship is trust. Trust that develops over time, by listening and sharing experiences. Ask your caregiver to share his warmest Thanksgiving memories and family stories. This will help you know the person behind a caregiver.

Thank You Leaves

If your grand kids are visiting you for Thanksgiving, keep them entertained with Thanksgiving-theme art projects. Since Parkinson’s might have impacted your handwriting, ask kids to write why you are thankful for his support. Provide them with crayons, markers, and stickers to use for decorating the leaves. Keep it a surprise until you get to the Thanksgiving table.

Since we live in a digital world where you can wish anyone over a simple Email, Facebook status or a tweet, making a thank you leaf will surely take your caregiver by surprise. After all, there is a reason why a handwritten note is magical, especially during the holidays.

Appreciate small things

A strong hug or kind words can express your gratefulness better than expensive gifts. On Thanksgiving Day you shouldn’t miss an opportunity to hug your caregiver or give compliments to him. Hugging is what you really can do to express your affection and gratitude. Record a video of you thanking your caregiver, which you can later share with him and others.

Pass on your memories

You can always pass on your favorite book or an antique item you loved to your caregiver. This is not only a way of thanking for his support but is also a great way to share a moment of happiness. Expressing your gratitude in the presence of guests will give you satisfaction, happiness and telling your caregiver what he or she means to you. A personalized note plus a small gift (treat or gift card) will go a long way to make your caregiver feel appreciated for his hard work.

This Blog is contributed by Dr. Deepak Kr. Nain. He is a certified therapist who specializes in the field of rehabilitation. Deepak possesses a clinical expertise in prescribing the best solutions to help people with neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, Stroke, Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS).


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