Guest Author - Bonnie Sayers
The following four books can be perused by family members, relatives, teachers, therapists and others who care about someone with a disablity or chronic illness.
As the parent to two children on the autism spectrum I read books and subscribe to magazines that deal with other issues besides autism. We parents can connect to those who care for their aging parents, an ill spouse or another parent taking care of their child with a disability. I am a home health care worker for my youngest son. There are parents and spouses who do the same work in their homes for their loved ones. We share a common bond as caregivers and need support and words of encouragement like those who work in the health industry and other related professionals.
I like finding small books that I can slip into my bag and read while in line waiting to conduct business or at an appointment in a waiting room. We take our children to many therapy appointments and can delve into a book during the down time. I even keep post it notes and a highlighter in my bag for easy reference while on the go.
If you are unsure of what to get a teacher, therapist or business associate, you may want to consider one of these books. In doing so we are shedding light on life with an illness and caring for those with health issues.
Beyond Casseroles - 505 Ways to Encourage a Chronically Ill Friend is a pocket-sized book with under ninety pages of tips and ideas. The author is the founder of Rest Ministries, Inc. Instead of the usual phrase, call me if you need anything, this book guides you into doing the things your friend would appreciate. This gives insights into living with illnesses and what little things friends can do to ease the pain and suffering by continuing the friendship despite the obstacles.
Some of these great tips include - a windchime for their patio, plant flower bulbs in her yard, paint her toenails, gift certificates to local fast-food restaurants, clean out her refrigerator, get her a cordless phone, bring her a catalog of interest, books on tape make great gifts, offer to drop off her mail, bring a bedtray with a cloth napkin, flower and note.
This book is filled with nuggets of information to help you make that phone call, drop by for a visit and keep in touch when you are not sure how to make that first step.
If you've ever wanted to crawl in the closet with an OREO... Tips for parenting a child with special needs. This little black book is fun to read through and a conversation starter for wherever you may be and reading through these pages. The font size changes on the pages with some pages only a few words expressed. There are blasts of bold throughout the 141 pages of this little square book.
The premise for an OREO was inspired by The Noonan Syndrome Support Group (TNSSH). Their online support network utilized a cyber-OREO. There is a two-page introduction from the author. This book has many phrases to help guide the parent through their daily struggles. Some of the ones I found appealing:
"Just because a skill is not there today, doesn;t mean it will never be there...
Don't borrow other people's anger ...
Just because something worked with one kid doesn't necessarily mean it will work with another
Growth comes in SpUrtS
A child is not an alphabet.
Getting respite isn't a luxury!
Sme bad stuff is just going to happen.. it does to everyone!"
A Cup of Comfort for Parents of Chldren with Autism is about Stories of Hope and Everyday Success. Doug and Laurie Flutie provide the foreword. There are forty-five stories shared that consist of 1,000-2,000 words. These range from Leaving Literaville, The Weird Kid, Getting Along, Outside Inside the Box, To Welcome Chance, Entomology, An Exercise in Acceptance, A is for Ability, Life with the Family Gangsta and Sara's First Friend.
Each essay was submitted by real people sharing about their children on the autism spectrum. This is an insightful book for relatives, newly diagnosed families, college students, teachers and those working with the population. You will get a glimpse into the lives of these families and realize we all go through the same difficulties and share in the same joys. This will be helpful to those who feel alone and could inspire other families to submit their stories for the next edition.
The Fearless Caregiver - How to Get the Best Care for Your Loved One and Still Have a Life of Your Own is written by the Editor and Publisher of Today's Caregiver Magazine.
There is an extensive listing of all the contributors to this book within eleven chapters. The index covers six pages. The chapters are as follows:
1. The early days
2. Legal and Financial Matters
3. "Doctor, Can You Hear Me?"
4. Care Tips
5. Caring for Aging Loved Ones
6. Specialized Caregiving
7. Depression, Guilt and Fear
8. Care of the Caregiver
9. Caregivers and the Holidays
10. When In-Home Caregiving Is No Longer Enough
11. And In the End
The highlights of this book include -Caregiver's Emotional First Aid Kit, When Thirty Seconds are Enough, An Ingtroduction to Rehabilitation, Fight for yor Rights, Top Ten Things for Caregivers to Stat Doing Now, Is It Time to take away the keys?, The Care and Feeding of Caregivers, Colon Cancer Care List, When Guilt Comes Knocking, Respite Solutions, Caregivers and the Internet, Caregiver-Friendly Facilities, What to look for in a nursing home.
There are great checklists in the last chapters that are very helpful and organized. Both my maternal grandmother and her sister passed away from Alzheimer's. I remember learning of my grandmother's car accidents and how they had to take away the keys and her access to the car.
This is a great book for families that are also dealing with elderly loved ones that might have to move into the home or the family with a child on the autism spectrum goes to visit the grandparents and has to discuss their care. The terminology and Doctor questions are straight forward with the book being easy to comprehend. Now is the time to read through this and prepare for the upcoming holiday season as a caregiver or family member offering support to the caregiver.
Caring for the Caregiver - AARP article
HealthCare Gift Cards
The family manual on understanding Schizophrenia
Resources on Special Needs Trusts
Educational Autism Tips for Families 71 page resourceful ebook for families entering the school system with a recent autism diagnosis. Find out what issues take place over the course of a school day and meet these challenges head on.