Luz’s Caregiving Story

How long have you been a caregiver? Luz and her mother Maria
Luz and her mother Maria

17 years.
 

Who do you care for?

I used to care for both my mom and my dad. Since my dad’s passing from cancer four years ago, I only care for my mom now.
 

What are some of the things you’ve done for your parents, as a caregiver?

I cared for my dad when he had cancer. It was very hard to care for them both. While my father had cancer, my mother had Alzheimer’s — she was very aggressive the last four months before my father died. 

I had to care for her on my own, and also care for him. I was alone, and it was so hard to share my time with them both. I cooked for them, fed them and took them to their medical appointments. I also managed their medications, bathed them and talked to them.
 

What have been some of the greatest challenges in your caregiving journey?

The greatest challenge was sharing my time with them both and trying to also give both of them good care. 

I was emotionally and physically impacted by it. I was so stressed about not being able to count on anybody else’s support. My daughter has helped me some, but she has her own responsibilities with her family and children. Yet she is still the one who has helped me the most.
 

What are the most rewarding aspects of caregiving for this person?

The most gratifying aspect of caregiving for my parents is that I feel glad that even though I am not a perfect caregiver, I was able to bring them here. I was able to bring them to the United States from Mexico, and care for them. 

I know that being here is better for them than having stayed in Mexico. This is because here I’ve been able to help them more than I would have if they had stayed there.
 

What advice do you have for other caregivers?

Be very patient. It is very hard work, but with patience and tolerance you will be able to get it done.