I’m not a complainer or worrier-at least not often or for long. Comparatively, I have little to complain or worry about. Yet, this week I struggle with pneumonia, try to regain strength, not hurt myself coughing and not being a jerk or a burden. I’m also turning 65 and enrolling in Medicare. I keep dwelling on the amount of effort it takes to be or support someone who is sick. What is that effort? I’ve come up with six questions anyone who is worrying asks themselves. You’ll see in the pie chart below that I’ve arbitrarily assigned a percentage to how much I think most people worry about each question. (No science here, no evidence, just my thoughts)
A little more detail about these questions.
- What do we need to do? What are we trying to accomplish? (Health goals, medical problems). What steps do we need to take? (Care plan).
- Can we do it where we live? What will it take to stay home? (Home accessibility, assistive devices, asking for and managing help). What if we can’t do it at home? (Case management, researching options, advocacy).
- Who’s going to do what, when? (Team and care management, coordination of care, keeping track).
- Is whatever we’re doing working? How do we know? How can we do it differently?
- How’re we going to pay for this? (Insurance, billing, barter, financial management, working while sick or caring)
- How will we stay sane? (Self-care, counseling, peer support).
In this next pie chart, I’ve arbitrarily assigned a percentage of how important I think each question is. You can see that I rank staying sane and is whatever we’re doing working higher than I think most people do.
What keeps you up at night? Do your own percentages, I have no evidence for mine. In any case, I wonder how we can help each other with these worries?