ABODE Academy 3
Wine Tasting

Care for the Caregiver: Refilling Our Cup

“There are only four kinds of people in the world: Those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers and those who will need caregivers.”

– Rosalynn Carter

More than 53 million Americans provide care for adults and children who cannot care for themselves. Whether helping an aging parent, a terminally ill spouse or child or any special person in need, those giving care often do so at a great personal sacrifice of time, energy and income.

ABODE cares about caregivers because we, ourselves, are caregivers. We understand the many challenges associated with caring for those we love most.

In ABODE Academy 3, we’ll share what we’ve learned from our caregiving families, our own End of Life Navigators and other ABODE community experts. We’ll cover various contemplative ways to foster our mental, emotional, spiritual and physical health, ensuring we’re providing the best of care to our loved ones by caring for ourselves.

Join us for our ABODE Academy 3, a 6-week training series via Zoom, 6:30-7:30 p.m., Thursday evenings, starting July 15.

As you know, we do not charge our Guests for our services. If you’d like to donate to ABODE to support this or any of our other upcoming education programs, please use our DONATE button.

Here’s our lineup of ABODE Academy 3 sessions – each includes plenty of time for Q&A. Participate in all or indicate those of most interest to you when you RSVP:

  1. Thursday, July 15
    Hospice: Is It Time?

    Speakers: Dominique Yang-Kim MD and Beverly Tuomala RN, Christus Hospice

Often we wait to call hospice until the final days and weeks of our loved one’s life, not realizing that the benefits of this loving service can begin much sooner and improve the quality of everyone’s life, including ours. Hospice provides specialized nursing care, medications, medical equipment and supplies at no cost, along with guidance and support during this tender time. Learn when it’s time for hospice, what hospice will do (and not do) for us, how to find and choose a hospice and the difference between palliative care and hospice care.
  1. Thursday, July 22
    Caregiving: The Ultimate Juggling Act

    Speaker: Bishop Anthony Obey

As our loved one moves into his or her final phase of life, we’ll likely find ourselves taking on more and more responsibilities. Keeping up with appointments, cooking special meals, attending to medications and possible wound care, helping with showers and dressing, and, as they become immobile, helping with toileting. While we’ll have the support of our loved one’s hospice team, if our loved one lives with us, then all these tasks will likely fall to us. Join us as we discuss ways to prepare for this most meaningful – and most rewarding – “job” we’ll ever have.
  1. Thursday, July 29
    We Can’t Care for Mom at Home – Now What?

    Speakers: Rigo Montero, Social Worker, Embrace Hospice, and Mary Thorsby, Executive Director, ABODE

As our loved ones continue to decline, their need for 24/7 care will grow. At some point, we won’t be able to leave them alone – not even to run to the grocery store. What happens when we can no longer care for our loved ones at home? Where can they go? Learn about ABODE’s contemplative care approach along with San Antonio’s other housing options for those at end of life and how to qualify.

  1. Thursday, Aug. 5
    Managing the Family Dynamic

    Speaker: Byron Cordes, LCSW, C-ASWCM, Sage Care Management

Family dynamics can play a significant role in helping – or hindering – our loved one’s final phase of life. Guilt, anger, sadness, disagreements, grief, greed – these emotions are normal, even among those with the very best intentions. Learn ways to find peace and common ground so that the final days are filled with love, dignity, respect and celebration as we walk our loved one home.

  1. Thursday, Aug. 12
    Self Care: Put Your Mask on First

    Speaker: Denise Kirmse

“In case of a cabin pressure emergency, put on your own mask first before assisting others.” Anyone who’s flown has heard this time and again. The concept is simple: We can’t help others for very long if we don’t take care of ourselves first. In this session, we explore contemplative ways to foster our mental, emotional, spiritual and physical health as we give the best gift of all – caring for those we love most.

  1. Thursday, Aug. 19
    The Final Goodbye

    Speakers: Hal Smarkola, Mary Rogers and Greta Mann

Those of us who provided around-the-clock care for our loved one will tell you: It was hard, heartbreaking and all-consuming. And we wouldn’t trade that time for anything. Join us as members of the ABODE community recall the ups and downs and lessons learned while caring for their loved ones.