It’s not easy being away from your family, even at the best of times, but sometimes we have no other choice. If you have a job or other commitment that requires you to live in a different part of the world, then, well, that’s just one of the burdens of following your dreams. While most people can manage this separation with only some difficulties, it does get much more difficult if your parents are getting older. When you have to start giving them care, the miles between you suddenly seem much longer. Still, even with those issues, it’s still possible to there to support your mother and father in their later years.
Getting Them Involved
Spare a thought for those lost souls who, one hundred years ago and more, would depart from their country, set sail for a new world, and then maybe, one day, if they were lucky, send word that they were well. Today, we have no such concerns. At a bare minimum, we have telephones, and then there’s Skype, messaging services, and so on. All of these can help you to stay in touch with your parents on a daily basis. Call them, send them photos; whatever it takes to make them feel included in your life.
Go Home Whenever Possible
And just as technology has improved communication, so has it improved travel. From more or less anywhere in the globe, you can be home within a day – and of course, often it’s much less than that. It’s also very affordable to fly these days, much more so than in the olden days, so it won’t break the bank to go home semi-regularly. You’ll be able to check in on your parents much more efficiently if you go home four or five times a year rather than just once.
It’s also worth remembering that just because you can’t be physically there to support your parents, doesn’t mean they have to go it alone. If you have siblings, you can establish a rota of shifts for everyone to take care or look in on your parents. If you don’t live near them, you might be able to help in other ways. If you’re worried about their health or mobility, you can check out www.caregiverconnection.org and look into assisted living options. Though you might live far away, you have options that’ll ensure your parents need never be without help.
Encourage Trips to See You
You should also encourage your parents to visit you, provided they’re physically able to do so. Many older people reject the idea of traveling, but if they’re in good health, try and push the idea through; sometimes having new experiences and seeing a different part of the world can do wonders for our vitality, whatever our age.
Finally, it’s important that you go easy on yourself. It’s not easy being away from your family when they need you, but it’s also wrong to put your own life on pause for others. Do what you can, to the best of your ability, and you’ll have nothing to regret.