No matter how hard we try, everyone’s time here on earth is limited. Deciding when it’s “time to go” is often outside our control. As end-of-life approaches, many families place their loved ones in the hands of a professional hospice care provider. But the hospice process can be painful, filled with countless negative emotions, including anticipatory grief.
If you currently find yourself in this difficult situation. Here are some reliable ways to navigate the grieving process when a loved one is receiving hospice care.
Symptoms of Anticipatory Grief.
Anticipatory grief is the grief that a person begins to feel while preparing for something negative, for example, the terminal conclusion of a loved one’s life due to declining health. It can be felt by the person who is nearing death or those impacted most by their impending loss.
Symptoms of anticipatory grief include:
- Inability to concentrate
- Emotional numbness
- Reluctant acceptance
Preparing for a Loved One’s Death
Feeling emotional while preparing for the death of a loved one is normal and may even include mourning. For the sake of your health and wellbeing, it’s essential to keep yourself from getting overwhelmed by delegating preparation tasks and seeking emotional support.
Keep things simple by staying organized and building a strong support network. If there are any final arrangements that must be completed before your loved one passes, give yourself plenty of time to spare. Other family members and friends should be notified of the impending death so they can say proper goodbyes and provide closure for all.
Putting old resentments and conflicts aside will allow you all to focus on your loved one’s wishes and ensure they have a peaceful passing. Communication is the key during this challenging time.
Building a Solid Social Support Network
No one should have to suffer through the grieving process alone. Seeking emotional support from others is the most important thing a person coping with anticipatory grief can do. Thankfully, many social networking opportunities exist for those suffering from anticipatory grief.
Although many find emotional support through close friends and relatives, support groups and meetings are available that those suffering from anticipatory grief can join. There are even online grief support groups that one can safely “attend” from a distance.
Finding Peace and Comfort
Contributing to another’s peace and comfort usually helps promote your own. Here are some meaningful ways for all parties to find peace and comfort, including the one receiving hospice care:
- Sharing short stories about their favorite pastimes
- Recalling moments of humor
- Describing your loved one’s unique interests and life contributions
- Holding hands and praying together
- Playing their favorite music
- Reading together
- Looking at a few memorable family photos
- Sitting together in the silence of loving companionship.
Self-Care Tips While Grieving
It is also vital to take care of yourself while experiencing anticipatory grief. Because these self-care tips can positively affect your overall wellbeing when practiced regularly. So, be sure to set aside time whenever possible to:
- Start and continue to write in a caregiving journal.
- Participate in physical activities that you enjoy.
- Engage in your favorite hobbies and interests.
- Eat a healthy diet rich in whole grains, fresh produce, and comfort foods.
- Be patient and gentle with yourself.
- End each day with thoughtful moments for peaceful closure.
Although your loved one’s professional hospice care provider will address most aspects of their end-of-life care, most families end up providing in-home support for activities of daily living (ADLs), like dressing, bathing, meals, and transportation but When that isn’t possible, filling in the caregiving “gaps” by hiring a professional in-home caregiver sometimes becomes necessary.
Personalized In-Home Care for Families in South Florida
Providing daily living assistance to a loved one in hospice care isn’t always possible. At Dependable Senior Care, we are a fully licensed and insured home care provider with highly qualified caregivers who are well trained and carefully screened. Our personalized in-home solutions are available 7 days a week, ranging from a few hours per day to 24-hour and live-in care. For your peace of mind, DSC is owned and operated by healthcare professionals with over 80 years of combined experience.
In addition to those receiving hospice care, our compassionate in-home caregivers can provide daily living assistance for personal care, respite care, nursing care, companionship care, and Alzheimer’s and dementia care. Your family trusted source for senior in-home care in South Florida with offices in Palm Beach and Broward County is Dependable Senior Care. To learn more now or schedule an initial consultation, please visit us at www.dependableseniorcare.com!