I am just one of the many Australians who have provided care for family members or friends. Our stories are all different but the similarities are many. Being a carer changes your life. I was my husband’s primary carer for 13 years.
There are the misgivings, even fears, as you take on tasks which your partner had previously achieved so easily. There is a noise coming from the car engine – what is it? Is it serious? The gutters are loaded with leaves – could I manage to get the ladder from under the house and clear them? The fluorescent light in the kitchen isn’t working any more? Can I just buy replacement tubes? What did Bill say about a new starter? Who do I ask? Suddenly the house, garden and car maintenance are your responsibility.
There was also the very serious consideration that I had to give to planning for our later life. We had made our Wills and how fortunate it was that I already had Bill’s enduring Power of Attorney in place. However, up until that stage I hadn’t thought about Enduring Guardianship, but realised that it was a vital step which needed to be taken. I contacted our family solicitor and because Bill was still capable of making decisions, he was able to draw up the necessary document. This planning gave me security of knowing that I had taken care of all that I could for our future.
More importantly, instead of worrying about ‘what if’ I had time to say the things I wanted to say and build memories as we spent precious time together.
For more information, visit www.planningaheadtools.com.au or call 1300 887 529.