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Caregiver session is planned for February

Upcoming caregiver information:

Please plan to join us Wednesday, Feb. 6. Last winter, 10 Hastings-serving agencies met with a group of Hastings caregivers to talk about how we, as a community, could better support the caregivers among us. Now, we'd like to invite caregivers to meet with us once again and let us know how we are doing and how we might do more. If you are a caregiver for an older adult, please plan to join us for a light dinner and conversation from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 6 at Tilden Community Center. Please RSVP by Jan. 31 to 651-480-7670 so we can plan dinner.

If you would like information about Advance Care Directives or help completing one with your loved one, contact Rev. Peter Morlock, Advanced Care Planning Chaplain at Regina Medical Center. He can be reached by calling 651-480-4587.

Here is one caregiver's reflections on caring for older loved ones:

Caring reflections in real time

Have you ever seen the old Star Trek episode where the aliens move so fast they're invisible to the humans? Each group is going about its business in the way normal way, side by side, but in completely different time realities. Sometimes caregiving is like that. The caregiver buzzes around at breakneck speed because she's busy, things need to get done, and, quite frankly, because she can. But the person she's caring for can't, and the difference is stark. I unpack bags of groceries and put dishes in the dishwasher in the time it takes my dad to turn his wheelchair to face the action. I change the sheets and start a load of laundry in the time it takes him to brush his teeth. We're not invisible to each other, but I fear he feels left behind or unseen. Since he can't speed up, I have to slow down. I sit, put my feet up, and settle in on the couch in his line of sight. He relaxes, knowing we'll be in the same time reality for at least a while. It's not so hard, really. Why don't I do it more often?

(Editor's note: Beth's complete online journal can be found at: )

For a resource guide for service providers who can help in your caregiver journey, please stop by the Hastings Senior Center in the Tilden Community Center, or go online to:

If you would like to submit a question or concern about your own caregiving experience, and get direct, one-to-one information and advice from a licensed social worker and eldercare advisor, please visit: or call 651-455-1560.

This section of the Star Gazette is a resource for family and friends helping an older adult. We hope you find this section useful, and if you have any comments or suggestions, we would love to hear them. Please contact Colleen Fritsch at DARTS, 651-234-2222.