If you are a caregiver, when was the last time you made a specific effort to put yourself first?
As we all know, it can be difficult to find the time and energy to think about our own needs and well-being, but we must.
Elevated levels of depression and anxiety
Higher use of psychoactive medications
Worse self-reported physical health
Compromised immune function
Increased risk of early death
Folks, I can’t stress enough how crucial it is that even when we are in the throws of caring for a loved one, we have to also consider our own health, both physical and mental.
One Florida woman has made it her mission to do just that, and help others do the same.
Julie Cook Downing spent years helping her father care for his aging and declining wife.
Then, after losing her mother, she was also tasked with assisting her father.
That experience motivated her to take steps to provide support and guidance to other caregivers.
Cook-Downing created and led a series of support groups for caregivers, stressing that our care-focus must also be on the caregivers.
Her father was a military veteran, so her passion to help others extended even further. Over the years she has focused a large portion of her work on helping those who care for other veterans.
Keeping It REAL Caregiving is excited and proud to introduce you to Julie Cook Downing, the creator and founder of ‘Caregivers’ Comfort Creations.’
She has spent years designing support products to give caregivers a simple and easy way to share their feelings. That includes following and writing in a journal, and accessing daily reminders to care for ourselves. Such care is necessary if we are to properly care for others.
I caught up with Cook-Downing recently, for the latest episode of the...
We talked about her journey through the caregiving space, what she has learned, and her advice for others entering this reality.
Here is a short portion of our conversation and what Cook-Downing told me about why she is determined to help others.
Be sure to watch my full interview with Julie Cook-Downing to learn more about her years of service to caregivers and the ‘must do’ steps she wants all of us to take!
Plus, I am excited and proud to say, Keeping It REAL Caregiving and Caregivers’ Comfort Creations are entering into a wonderful new friendship and partnership!
Because our mutual goals are to reach as many caregivers as possible with information, guidance and support, you can now purchase the Caregivers’ Comfort Creations 2023 downloadable calendar, using a special offer.
Keeping It REAL Caregiving thanks Julie Cook Downing for her vision and new partnership. We are excited because as KIRC continues to grow, we’ll be able to reach more people.
Plus - I mentioned this briefly in a previous post, but KIRC is in the process of launching a CAREGIVER OF THE MONTH feature to recognize those going above and beyond the call of duty.
Your support with a calendar purchase will help to build the coffers to provide a recognition prize for a Caregiver of the Month. We are on our way folks!
And remember - as caregivers, if we don’t take care of ourselves, we are no good to anyone around us!
Be kind to yourself~