This Caregiver Life

This Caregiver Life

By Mary Hahn Ward
Hosts Jennifer Mackinday & Mary Hahn Ward are long-time caregivers. "This Caregiver Life" podcast explores the journey of caregivers from all walks of life. Whether you are a caregiver, clinician, or community member supporting caregivers, you'll connect with our stories, resources, and insight. We share an unfiltered look into the frontlines of caregiving, of #thiscaregiverlife. p.s. We are excited to share we have recently been rated a top ten caregiver podcast! Wow!
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E5: Cherish The Moments

This Caregiver Life

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This Caregiver Life

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E46: Hope After Stroke with Tsgoyna Tanzman
In this episode, Mar & Jenn are joined by Speech-Language Pathologist and Life Coach Tsgoyna Tanzman. She's helped thousands of people transition after stroke and brain injury to the next stages of their lives. Tsgoyna is an expert at helping people find their inner and outer resources using her unique approach that combines traditional and holistic speech therapy along with the life coaching practices. She is best known for her down-to-earth practicality, enthusiasm, and sense of humor while compassionately guiding caregivers and survivors through recovery. One size does not fit all when it comes to recovery or caregiving, and in this show, we discuss Tsgoyna's 5-part 'secret sauce' of recovering: faith, curiosity, persistence, humor, and gratitude. We also talk about the importance of HOPE, why you should have, why your care recipient needs it, and why the best medical providers share it!  Check our her book Hope After Stroke for Caregivers and Survivors: The Holistic Guide to Getting Your Life Back. Tsgoyna’s humor and poignant life stories appear in 15  differentiations anthologies of Chicken Soup for the Soul. She has also been featured by Huffington Post, CNBC News, USA Today, Glamour Magazine, Woman's Day Magazine, the LA Times and the Chicago Tribune. Connect with Tsgoyna Tanzman online: https://www.facebook.com/Tsgoyna and https://hope-stroke.com, or email hopeafterstrokenow@gmail.com. Find resources for stroke and aphasia by visiting aphasia.org and https://enableme.org (which also has a simplified version for stroke sufferers).  Thanks for listening! Find us on social media: twitter.com/thiscaregiver, facebook.com/thiscaregiverlife, and instagram.com/thiscaregiverlife. We’d love to receive your thoughts and request, so send us an email or even a voice memo to thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com. …until next time!
39:14
July 8, 2020
E45: Thrive With Your Tribe
In this episode, Mar and Jenn are joined by Raquel Derrick, Founder of Family Operating Base in the last of our 4-part collaboration.  We discuss the complex issues of caregiving we've explored in this series and the takeaways we hope listeners can use in their lives.  We're still working from home. We're still experiencing the COVID-19. Stay at home, don't stay at home, take a million precautions. You can go here but not there. We're still in the midst of that. So life is still complicated. Just like this caregiver life. Whether it's during this time of COVID, or in the future, this caregiver life is all about making connections and communicating with one another, and that's what this series with Family Operating Base has been all about.  Thanks for listening! Find us on social media: twitter.com/thiscaregiver, facebook.com/thiscaregiverlife, and instagram.com/thiscaregiverlife. We’d love to receive your thoughts and request, so send us an email or even a voice memo to thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com. …until next time!
27:27
July 8, 2020
E44: Offering Yourself Grace
In this episode, Mar and Jenn are joined by Shawn Moore, LMSW, Executive Director and Founder of Caregivers on the Homefront and Raquel Derrick, Founder of Family Operating Base.   We discuss the challenges of caring for yourself while caring for a loved one, and ways we can show ourselves the grace we show others.  What is grace? The definition tells us that it's simple elegance or refinement of movement, courteous goodwill, or do honor or credit to (someone or something) by one's presence. Showing one's self grace can be challenging, so we discuss ways to make internal grace a reality.  Thanks for listening! Find us on social media: twitter.com/thiscaregiver, facebook.com/thiscaregiverlife, and instagram.com/thiscaregiverlife. We’d love to receive your thoughts and request, so send us an email or even a voice memo to thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com. …until next time!
36:47
July 7, 2020
E43: Caregiver Career Conversation with Larry Nisenson
Mar and Jenn are joined by Larry Niesenson, Genworth Financial Chief Commercial Officer, the parent company of CareScout® Caregiver Support Services.  A caregiver for his father who was diagnosed with a brain tumor, Larry is passionate about solving the problems caregivers and employers face in the workforce.  In this episode, we explore those challenges for caregivers and employers. Larry is an expert and wants to connect. Feel free to email him at larry.nisenson@genworth.com.  Caregivers and the workforce: Nearly 60 percent of all family caregivers work full or part-time Caregivers frequently experience feelings of guilt and remorse when leaving their loved ones to go to work Employers often offer paid leave or related programs that can help employee caregivers, though employees who don't identify as caregivers may not be aware of their benefits.  Helping employers understand the need by self-identifying can expand offerings such as flexible work hours, employee assistance programs, and telecommuting opportunities. Click through to AARP for more information about caregiving & employment and to read Jennifer's employment case study. We also discuss long-term care insurance. Did you know by the time you reach 65, there's a 50% chance that you’ll require paid long-term care (LTC) someday? Paying out-of-pocket averages $140,000! Only 7.2 million or so Americans have planned for this expense by purchasing LTC insurance, which covers many of the costs of a nursing home, assisted living or in-home care expenses that aren’t covered by Medicare. Thanks for listening! Find us on social media: twitter.com/thiscaregiver, facebook.com/thiscaregiverlife, and instagram.com/thiscaregiverlife. We’d love to receive your thoughts and request, so send us an email or even a voice memo to thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com. …until next time!
42:38
June 20, 2020
E42: Honoring Lisa - End ALS
Mar's guest today, Michael Bullen, was a caregiver to his spouse, Lisa, who had an aggressive form of ALS. They were married for twenty-five years. The last fourteen months of their marriage they battled an aggressive form of ALS together. Michael is committed to a lifelong ALS awareness campaign that includes the need for treatments, a cure, and kindness to those who have ALS and the people who care for them.  The form of ALS Lisa had is bulbar ALS. To find out more about ALS please visit this site: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/neurology_neurosurgery/centers_clinics/als/conditions/als_amyotrophic_lateral_sclerosis.html To view the ALS PSA video at the beginning of this podcast please visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L03JETqtS3k #ThisCaregiverLife #Caregivers #ALS #EndALS 
36:42
June 12, 2020
E41: Finding Our Way After Loss with Wounded Warrior Project’s Dan Miller
Mar and Jenn are joined by Dan Miller, Wounded Warrior Project Warriors Speak spokesperson, and Raquel Derrick, Founder of Family Operating Base.  In this episode, we explore the complexities of grief and talk about the differences between ambiguous and anticipatory grief.  Some facts about grief: According to a 2005 study by Dr. Katherine Shear, Dr. Ellen Frank, and Patricia Houck, most people experience the deepest grief in the first few weeks and months following a loss, but for 10% of people, grief can last years, or even indefinitely Every year 2.5 million people die in the United States, leaving an average of 5 grieving loved ones Symptoms of grief can be emotional, physical, social or religious in nature The seven emotional stages of grief are: shock or disbelief, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression, and acceptance or hope Grief is a natural reaction to loss. It's both a universal and personal experience. Talking about our grief can be therapeutic and we hope listening to this podcast helps inspire you to find a peer network, a tribe, of support.  We all have tribes, and we hope you find yours.  Read Sebastian Junger's book TRIBE: https://amzn.to/2CalXcx  Find us on social media: twitter.com/thiscaregiver, facebook.com/thiscaregiverlife, and instagram.com/thiscaregiverlife. We’d love to receive your thoughts and request, so send us an email or even a voice memo to thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com. …until next time! More links: Jenn’s pro tip is to learn to say NO! Read her article about this underused strategy, https://www.hopeforthewarriors.org/newsroom/the-art-of-saying-no-as-caregiver/ Mar’s Blog has a plethora of pro tips, https://www.maryhahnward.com Join the Family Operating Base FOB Community on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/familyoperatingbasecommunity/
57:42
June 10, 2020
E40: Adapting to a Virtual Life
This  Caregiver Life is excited to collaborate with Family Operating Base to produce a 4-episode special highlighting caregiver best practices that anyone can learn from. Each episode will feature Family Operating Base  Founder Raquel Derrick along with a special guest who will share their  ‘Pro Tips’ for overcoming challenges. Our 4-part special will explore the following topics: Part 1: Living Virtually, featuring Independent Travel Agent and Homeschooling parent Amanda Fleener Part 2: The Complexities of Grief, featuring Wounded Warrior Project’s Dan Miller Part 3: Healthy Mind, Healthy Body Part 4: Resiliency in the Face of Diversity During  Episode 40, we explored the challenges and rewards, of living virtually including work-from-home pro tips and an inside look at successful homeschooling. We’d love to hear from you, too. Please tag us in your posts about living virtually using hashtag #thiscaregiverlife. Find us on social media: twitter.com/thiscaregiver, facebook.com/thiscaregiverlife, and instagram.com/thiscaregiverlife. We’d love to receive your thoughts and request, so send us an email or even a voice memo to thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com. …until next time! More links: Jenn’s pro tip is to learn to say NO! Read her article about this underused strategy, https://www.hopeforthewarriors.org/newsroom/the-art-of-saying-no-as-caregiver/ Mar’s Blog has a plethora of pro tips, https://www.maryhahnward.com Join the Family Operating Base FOB Community on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/familyoperatingbasecommunity/
1:02:25
June 7, 2020
Bonus Episode: After Disability Continuing On
On this bonus episode, Continuing On, Mar interviews her husband, Tom, about his interest in oil painting. Talent v Effort. Mar and Tom have been married for nearly forty years. Tom had encephalitis in 1993. She has been caring for him since then. To know them is to know they are partners in life, and for life. Spouses first, caregiver, and care recipient second.  Encephalitis, a brain infection, impacted Tom's working memory and executive functioning. It did not, however, affect his optimistic, positive outlook on life. Even after a diagnosis of service-connected Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) in 2010, his spirit remains indomitable. He doesn't give in. He doesn't give up. Take a listen as he shares his take on why painting matters, and matter, to him. To see some of his paintings visit Mar's Fine Art America website. Prints are available for sale.  Among other things, Mar shares their journey on her blog. 
25:01
June 7, 2020
E39: Caregiver Bucket List
Mar and Jen review recent #caregiverchaos, doing deep work on self-care, and giving yourself permission to course correct. Show us how you take time for YOU. Post a pic or share a story on social media, tag us, and use the hashtag #selfkindness. You may just win a surprise from This Caregiver Life. Mar recently received a surprise gift box from Bitty & Beau's Coffee: more than just a place to grab a cup of coffee – it’s an experience. The shop is run by people with intellectual and developmental disabilities-check them out! https://www.bittyandbeauscoffee.com/  The National Alliance on Caregiving 2020 survey results are in. Read the results here: https://www.caregiving.org/caregiving-in-the-us-2020/  Want to be one of the coolest 11,000 people on the planet? Follow Mar's blog: http://www.maryhahnward.com/  Have an idea for our podcast? Want to share your thoughts with our listeners LIVE? We'd love to hear from you! Send us an email, a voice message, or a link to your favorite resource. thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com Love our show? Please leave us a 5-star rating and don't forget to share our show on your social media. Follow us on Facebook & Instagram @thiscaregiverlife and Twitter @thiscaregiver ...until next time...
28:53
June 6, 2020
E38: Pandemic - Caregivers May Lead The Way
Raquel Derrick, Ph.D., of Family Operating Base, joined Mary to share with our listeners how we are partnering in a four-part series.  Family Operating Base, FOB – Community, is an effort created by Raquel: When I first envisioned the FOB, it was to be a brick and mortar place of community support for military-connected families. Recent times have called me to revisit and revamp my idea. After all, brick and mortar areirrelevant at this time and we could all use a little community connection, military affiliation or not! Please join our private Facebook group for daily posts to promote a little sanity and hope during these strange times! New members are welcome. As caregivers we have much to offer non-caregivers in this post COVID-19 pandemic life. We are versatile, flexible, understanding, and compassion that runs deep. In cooperative effort TCL and FOB are creating the following four podcasts with caregivers as subject matter experts in pandemic life before there was a pandemic. The topics we will explore are: 1. Adapting to a Virtual Life 2. Adjusting to a New Normal 3. Healthy Mind, Healthy Body 4. Resilience
25:48
May 22, 2020
E37: Seeing the Light
Meet Terry Moore who sees the light. When his wife was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2016, Homeolux's Founder and CEO Terry Moore paused his retirement and dedicated his focus to searching for a scientific solution to provide hope and help for his family. Homeolux was born out of Terry Moore's drive to help his wife, and other families facing cognitive decline. The Beacon40™ is a light system that fits seamlessly into regular routines to support brain health. Scientific research shows, when a disturbance in the brain's gamma rhythm occurs, cognitive function decreases. Beacon40™ utilizes precise engineering to deliver lights pulsing at 40Hz, mirroring the brain's healthy gamma rhythm, which has been found to improve mental acuity, memory, and attention. Learn more: https://homeolux.com/ Terry Moore found out he'd been tying his shoes the wrong way his whole life. In the spirit of TED, he takes the stage to share a better way.  https://www.ted.com/talks/terry_moore_how_to_tie_your_shoes/transcript?language=en Please note we did have some technical interruptions in the middle of our podcast. We suspect it's all those gamers working from home competing with our bandwidth! Turned out just fine because it gave Mar a chance to tell us a little story about her experience with a sex therapist!   Have an idea for our podcast? Want to share your thoughts with our listeners LIVE? We'd love to hear from you! Send us an email, a voice message, or a link to your favorite resource. thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com Love our show? Please leave us a 5-star rating and don't forget to share our show on your social media. Follow us on Facebook & Instagram @thiscaregiverlife and Twitter @thiscaregiver ...until next time...
35:09
May 16, 2020
E36: Every Picture Tells a Story
Mar and Jen catch up, 21st century-style, and discuss all the ways we can tell stories. Mar shares how her love of photography has been affected by limited travel, exploring the ups and downs of adjusting our hobbies to meet current lifestyle restrictions. Learn more about Mary's journey through life behind the lens and read evergreen blog articles at: http://www.maryhahnward.com/  Jenn's life-long love of storytelling led her to co-author the book Friends for Life: Strangers Brought Together by the War in Iraq, along with two other published nonfiction titles.  Jenn is the proud recipient of the Eric Hoffer Award for Legacy Nonfiction. She is currently writing a novel set in the 1970's of a childhood interrupted by family strife and economic struggle.   Have an idea for our podcast? Want to share your thoughts with our listeners LIVE? We'd love to hear from you! Send us an email, a voice message, or a link to your favorite resource: thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com Love our show? Please leave us a 5-star rating and don't forget to share our show on your social media. Follow us on Facebook & Instagram @thiscaregiverlife and Twitter @thiscaregiver ...until next time...
26:18
May 4, 2020
E35: This COVID Life
Jenn & Mar check in with each other as the COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders continue.  We talk about the self-care medical professionals practice, as exampled in an episode of Mar’s favorite tv show NEW AMSTERDAM, and we discuss the pros and cons of mentoring other caregivers. Have an idea for our podcast? Want to share your thoughts with our listeners LIVE?  We'd love to hear from you! Send us an email, a voice message, or a link to your favorite resource. thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com  Love our show? Please leave us a 5-star rating and don't forget to share our show on your social media.  Follow us on Facebook & Instagram @thiscaregiverlife and Twitter @thiscaregiver ...until next time... 4/17/2020
40:16
April 27, 2020
E34: There, there. Now, now: Caregiving During the COVID-19 Crisis
Jenn & Mar check in with each other as the COVID-19 Crisis Progresses. On a scale of 1-10, where are you? Use these links to explore the resources from today's show: Meditation is the beginning of mindfulness. Get started with guided meditation by Tara Brach: https://www.tarabrach.com/guided-meditation-basic-meditations/ Download the Calm App: www.calm.com Read Brené Brown's "Gifts of Imperfection": https://amzn.to/2UVSIRz Read Stars & Stripes article featuring Jenn & Mar: https://www.stripes.com/news/veterans/with-what-ifs-and-isolation-coronavirus-risks-weigh-on-caregivers-for-veterans-1.624720 "Safety Shaming" is all over social media. Shaming of any time is a bullying tactic. Bullying is never okay. Learn about bullying: StopBullying.gov Quote from Gautama Buddha: "There is one thing that, when cultivated and regularly practiced, leads to deep spiritual intention, to peace, to mindfulness and clear comprehension, to vision and knowledge, to a happy life here and now, and to the culmination of wisdom and awakening. And what is that one thing? It is mindfulness centered on the body." Have an idea for our podcast? Want to share your thoughts with our listeners LIVE? We'd love to hear from you! Send us an email, a voice message, or a link to your favorite resource. thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com Love our show? Please leave us a 5-star rating and don't forget to share our show on your social media. Follow us on Facebook & Instagram @thiscaregiverlife and Twitter @thiscaregiver ...until next time...
36:58
April 10, 2020
E33: Worst Case Reality - Caregiving and Coronavirus
The COVID-19 crisis has impacted millions across the globe. For caregivers, this time is uncertain and frightening. In this episode, Mar and Jenn discuss the effects of the Coronavirus on their families and ways anyone living this caregiver life can try to cope.  To listen to Episdoe 11: Worse Case Scenario, find a link to your favorite platform here: https://anchor.fm/thiscaregiverlife/episodes/E11-Worst-Case-Scenario-e56s91 As mentioned, AARP Community Connections helps people find or start a mutual aid group so they can help the people in their community most affected by the Coronavirus: https://aarpcommunityconnections.org/  Military and Veteran caregivers looking for support and resources can visit the Elizabeth Dole Foundation website: https://hiddenheroes.org/coronavirus/  Please connect with us on social media:  Facebook Instagram Twitter  EMail - thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com Thanks for listening. 
37:20
April 10, 2020
E32: Wounded Warrior Project's Alex Balbir Talks Traumatic Brain Injury
March is Brain Injury Awareness and we're focusing our efforts on increasing awareness of traumatic brain injury and the challenge. Throughout the month, Mar and Jenn will speak with experts working in the field of TBI, provide strategies for coping and share resources to educate the community. In this episode of This Caregiver Life, we are joined by Alex Balbir, Ph.D.  Alex serves as the Independence Services and Warrior Care Network Director at Wounded Warrior Project (WWP).  A graduate of University North Carolina and John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Alex is also an officer in the US Navy Reserve. During our conversation with Alex, we explore the multi-layered topic of Traumatic Brain Injury, known as TBI. What is TBI? A TBI is caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain. The severity of a TBI may range from “mild” (i.e., a brief change in mental status or consciousness) to “severe” (i.e., an extended period of unconsciousness or memory loss after the injury). People with TBI may experience moderate to severe disabilities that can interfere with their regular activities and quality of life. Cognitive function (e.g., impaired attention or memory); Motor function (e.g., extremity weakness or poor coordination and balance); Sensation (e.g., loss of hearing, vision, perception, or touch); and Emotion (e.g., depression, anxiety, aggression, loss of impulse control, or personality changes). Caring for loved one with TBI can be challenging, exhausting, and sometimes even overwhelming. In this episode, we discuss those challenges, the ways WWP helps veterans and caregivers, and ways we can all support those in our community who are living with TBI. Learn more about Wounded Warrior Project and its mission to WWP mission to honor and empower Wounded Warriors. https://www.woundedwarriorproject.org Have an idea for our podcast? Want to share your thoughts with our listeners LIVE? We'd love to hear from you! Send us an email, a voice message, or a link to your favorite resource. thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com Love our show? Please leave us a 5-star rating and don't forget to share our show on your social media. Follow us on Facebook & Instagram @thiscaregiverlife and Twitter @thiscaregiver
36:25
March 26, 2020
E31: Traumatic Brain Injury Rehabilitation
Dr. Norman joins us on this podcast to share her impactful work in the field of Traumatic Brain Injury, TBI, rehabilitation. To say it is work is a misnomer. It is Dr. Norman's passion in life. When speaking with her it is easy to absorb her love for what she does every day for those with TBI's. Not surprisingly Dr. Norman also gives of her time in a volunteer capacity by serving on the board of TBI Warrior Foundation.  Dr. Norman is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at the School of Health Professions at the University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio. She earned her undergraduate degree from Florida International University, her Master's degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  During her training, Dr. Norman was an American Speech-Hearing Association New Century Scholar and an NIH Predoctoral Fellow. In 2018, as a new faculty member at UT Health, she received both a School of Health Professions Pilot Grant and a Texas Society for Allied Health Professions Research Grant. Her research has been published in various peer-reviewed journals such as Brain Injury, American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, Military Medicine, Neuropsychologia, and Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Her research centers on improving the lives of individuals with a concussion or mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). She primarily uses experimental methods to investigate cognitive-communication disorders after mTBI.  As a recent recipient of the KL2 career development award at the University of Texas Health Science Center, Dr. Norman will use innovative methods such as discourse analysis and electroencephalogram (EEG) measures to richly characterize language output and shed light on the underlying cognitive mechanisms of language performance after mTBI. Dr. Norman aims to standardize assessment for mTBI-related communication disorders and use precise measurement to develop appropriate behavioral interventions to improve life participation for the mTBI population. In the fall of 2019, Dr. Norman was awarded a Teaching Excellence Award and the George Kudolo Award for Excellence in Research at the University of Texas School of Health Professions. #BrainInjury #TBI #Rehabilitation #Caregivers
38:58
March 24, 2020
E30: Hold on to Hope
Judi Logan joins us on this podcast, Hold on to Hope. Judi's son, Justin, was in a terrible accident in which he flipped his pick-up truck. Justin suffered a serious traumatic brain injury, TBI. He was in a coma for two and a half weeks. Judi shares with us the powerful story of becoming a caregiver to her 17-year-old son.  #TBI #TraumaticBrainInjury #ChangeYourMind #Caregiver #ThisCaregiverLife 
34:55
March 20, 2020
E29: Ask For Help
Sherri Piper joins us on the podcast. Sherri is married for 25 years to her husband Jay. They have four sons. Sherri has been a caregiver to her husband for six years. Among his other injuries he has a mild traumatic brain injury, TBI. She is the executive assistant for TBI Warrior Foundation. TBI Warrior Foundation is our sponsor for this episode. What does Sherri do for fun? She is a background actress.  When asked Sherri what thoughts she could share for a caregiver just starting on this journey she said: Ask For Help. Such great advice.  #TBI #TraumaticBrainInjury #ChangeYourMind #Caregivers #ThisCaregiverLIfe 
30:28
March 17, 2020
E28: Injury Prevention through Self-Regulation
Dr. Quinard Webb, a physical therapist, works closely with TBI Warrior Foundation. He provides physical therapy to TBI Warrior Foundation clients. He also participates in their caregiver training workshops. Dr. Webb is a wealth of information on rehabilitation and wellness. He shares with us on This Caregiver Life ideas on how to prevent injury for the caregiver through the concept of self-regulation.  Dr. Webb has a growing mobile practice in Texas: RenewU Therapy & Wellness. He is located in the San Antonio, Texas area. However, anyone who would like to seek him out for therapy can do so as long as they live in Texas. He uses technology for those who do not live in close proximity to Austin. If you would like to reach out to Dr. Webb you can do so via his Facebook page: RenewU Therapy & Wellness or email at q.webb@renewutherapy.com. #TBI #TraumaticBrainInjury #ChangeYourMind #PhysicalTherapy #Caregivers #ThisCaregiverLife 
33:01
March 13, 2020
E27: Crystal Clear on Caregiving - A Millennial Shares Her Journey
The month of March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. Meet Crystal Holdipp who cares for mom with a brain injury as a result of a stroke. Crystal's caregiving extends to her dad as well. Her dad is battling cancer. She is an amazing young woman.  Currently, Crystal is doing advocacy work for persons who have disabilities and impairments through Inspire Bermuda and works on their leadership team as a board member. In ministry, Crystal is a youth leader at Cities of Refuge Ministries where the pastors are Rev. John Woolridge and Rev. Oral Barnett. Recently, she has been given the task to oversee a ministry component called ‘Random Acts of Kindness’ as an outreach to youth and adults.  Crystal is also a published author: Poems From The Heart #BrainInjuryAwareness #ChangeYourMind 
26:03
March 10, 2020
E26: Let's Talk Intimacy
This podcast, Let's Talk Intimacy, Jen Ransil joined us for an open conversation regarding intimacy and disabilities for couples. Jen is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Pennsylvania; Adjunct Professor, Human Development and Family Science, Messiah College and Adjunct Professor, Marriage and Family Therapy Program, Evangelical Theological Seminary.  When Jen is not teaching she has a private practice in which she sees clients with couple/family issues, mental health, trauma and PTSD, and pre/post-deployment, as well as, wounded veterans' families. She specializes in sex therapy and relationship issues within military families.  #ThisCaregiverLife #Intimacy #TBI #ChangeYourMind
27:41
March 6, 2020
E25: Traumatic Brain Injury & Caregiving
March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. In this episode of This Caregiver Life, we are joined by health scientist Roxana E. Delgado, Ph.D., a national advocate and the wife of Sergeant First Class retired Victor L. Medina, MRC, CRC, a combat-wounded, Purple Heart Recipient veteran. She assumed the caregiving role, which has inspired her advocacy work and career path. With over a decade of experience in military medical research in the areas of health and wellbeing, most recently working with military families and caregivers, Roxana is active in the military and veteran caregiver community and is an Elizabeth Dole Foundation Fellow Alumni representing the State of Texas. She is a co-author of “The Caregivers Companion” book and serves as an advisor to several organizations aiming to improve the health, wellbeing and national policies for wounded, ill and injured veterans and their families. During our conversation with Roxana, we explore the multi-layered topic of Traumatic Brain Injury, known as TBI. What is TBI? A TBI is caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain. The severity of a TBI may range from “mild” (i.e., a brief change in mental status or consciousness) to “severe” (i.e., an extended period of unconsciousness or memory loss after the injury).  People with TBI may experience moderate to severe disabilities that can interfere with their regular activities and quality of life. Cognitive function (e.g., impaired attention or memory); Motor function (e.g., extremity weakness or poor coordination and balance); Sensation (e.g., loss of hearing, vision, perception, or touch); and Emotion (e.g., depression, anxiety, aggression, loss of impulse control, or personality changes). Caring for loved one with TBI can be challenging, exhausting, and sometimes even overwhelming. In this episode we discuss those challenges, tactics for coping, and ways we can all support those in our community who are living with TBI. Learn more about how our sponsor, TBI Warrior Foundation, and their mission to improve the quality of life of veterans, civilians, and children living with brain injury and their caregivers, through community integration, education, and advancement programs. https://www.tbiwarriorfoundation.org Read more about the Brain Injury Association of America's March Awareness #ChangeYourMind campaign: https://www.biausa.org/events/march-is-brain-injury-awareness-month Have an idea for our podcast? Want to share your thoughts with our listeners LIVE? We'd love to hear from you! Send us an email, a voice message, or a link to your favorite resource. thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com Love our show? Please leave us a 5-star rating and don't forget to share our show on your social media. Follow us on Facebook & Instagram (@thiscaregiverlife) and Twitter (@thiscaregiver).
40:39
March 4, 2020
E24: Caregiver DOWN
Jenn and Mar catch up with one another for the first time in a few weeks. Jenn had the flu. Mar had surgery.  Proving once again as much as caregivers often seem to be able to do it all, they, too, are human beings subject to illness and the demise of body parts. They were both caregivers DOWN the last few weeks. They are on the mend and looking forward to a yearful of interesting and engaging podcasts on "This Caregiver Life."
38:31
February 23, 2020
E23: Healing and the Holidays
On December 21, 2004, a suicide bomber attacked a military dining facility in Mosul, Iraq. Hundreds of service members were having lunch at the time, including Jenn’s younger brother James, an 20-year old Army Specialist serving with the Deuce Four Stryker Combat Brigade. In total, 14 U.S. soldiers were killed along 4 U.S. civilian employees of Halliburton, and 4 Iraqi soldiers. Another 72 people were Injured, including 51 U.S. soldiers. At the time, it was the single deadliest suicide attack on U.S. soldiers. For the men of Deuce Four and their loved ones, Christmas time would never be the same. Thank you for listening to this special episode. Honor the lives of those lost: https://youtu.be/xoa7hCzDsDY
57:19
December 21, 2019
E22: The Gift of Us
Co-host Mary and her husband, Tom, talk about the holidays and stress. From 1993 when Tom was battling a brain infection to his current all-out war with ALS they give some insight on how they make it work in the best way possible. 
15:47
December 20, 2019
E21: What About You
Shawn Moore, a caregiver to her husband, and founder of "Caregivers on the Homefront" talks about the importance of caregivers remembering who they are, and the ways in which she has navigated the holidays in recent years. 
19:52
December 9, 2019
E20: A Brand New Day
Tara's husband, Todd, was wounded in Afghanistan. Two of the men Todd was serving with, who were dear friends of both Todd and Tara, died in battle, on the day Todd was injured. It also happened to be Tara and Todd's anniversary. Tara shares how they changed things up so as to continue to honor the men that lost their lives on the day they died while celebrating their love and life commitment to one another with full hearts on a brand new day. 
17:37
December 2, 2019
E19: Letting Go
Roxana Delgado joins us for a conversation about reducing stress and letting it go. Roxana cares for her husband, Victor, a veteran who sustained a traumatic brain injury while deployed. 
17:55
November 25, 2019
E18: Upside Down Holidays
Caregiver, Lara Garey, loves the holidays. She shares that over the years, traditions evolved that her family loves. When her husband was diagnosed with ALS she created new ones, like an upside Christmas tree, to help them lovingly hold onto the memories of those traditions pre-disease. 
15:09
November 18, 2019
E17: This Life We Have
Brian Vines, a veteran, joins us for a frank conversation regarding the holidays and caregiving. He shares insights on how he has cared for his wife, wounded veteran, while also having his mother living with them for a period of time.  It would seem that there are not nearly as many male caregivers as femails. Brian helps dispel that myth when he shares that at least 40% of caregivers are males. 
15:58
November 11, 2019
Bonus Episode: Time Away
Mar recently had some time away from daily caregiving. She finds it reviving and energizing. She encourages caregivers to find some time to themselves once in a while. You can find the written piece on Mar's blog at www.maryhahnward.com
06:28
November 5, 2019
E16: Building Your Community Care Team
Colleen believes building a good team with family, healthcare providers, and community is highly important in helping her to be the best caregiver possible for her care recipient, her husband. We couldn't agree more. 
28:25
November 4, 2019
E15: Politico Panel - Caring on the Homefront
Jenn shares her recent experience as a panelist on Politico’s program “Caring on the Homefront”. On October 17, 2019, Politico hosted a panel discussion on improving policies that could help military/veteran caregivers. Jennifer was joined on the panel by Lisa Pape Deputy Chief Patient Care Services, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Terri Tanielian Senior Behavioral Scientist, RAND Corporation & Fellow,  Military Service Initiative, George W. Bush Presidential Center, and Ashish Vaziran Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, National Military Family Association.  #CaringOnTheHomefront #Politico #ThisCaregiverLife 
24:14
October 28, 2019
E14: The Future of Family Care with Wellthy's CEO Lindsay Jurist-Rosner
Lindsay Jurist-Rosner is the CEO of Wellthy, Inc. based in New York City. Wellthy is helping the 66 million Americans who care for aging, chronically ill, and disabled loved ones. With Wellthy, Lindsay is building the company she needed throughout the 28-years caring for her mother. Prior to founding Wellthy in 2014, Lindsay was in the advertising technology and media industries with functional responsibilities in marketing, product and sales. Lindsay served as the Senior Vice President of Marketing at NY-based advertising technology startup, Simulmedia. Before that, Lindsay ran Marketing Research at Machinima; worked in product and strategic marketing at Microsoft; worked in marketing at LA-based startup, Spot Runner; and ran the west coast advertising and marketing relationships for The Atlantic. Lindsay received an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BA. To find out more about Wellthy go to Wellthy.com. 
39:15
October 6, 2019
E13: 2nd Time Around
Meet Lisa who balances her growing career with caregiving for her husband. Lisa shares insight into how she makes it all work, and how any can keep moving forward in their life, despite setbacks. We also learn about 2nd.md. They connect clients with board-certified, leading doctors across the country for an expert second opinion via video or phone within 3 to 5 days. the best part is their Care Team coordinates all the details, so you can focus on one thing – getting the best care possible.  This season is all about asking for help, where to find it, and how to accept it when it's offered. We hope you enjoy this episode. Please consider leaving us a 5-star rating, and if you're a superfan, share a link to this podcast on your social media. You can connect to us online at www.facebook.com/thiscaregiverlife, on Twitter @ThisCaregiver. Interested in being a guest or sponsoring our show? Send us a note: thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com
34:01
September 26, 2019
E12: She Loved Him First
Welcome to Season 2 of "This Caregiver Life". "He Loved Her First", Denise Albea shares with us the journey she has been on caring for her dad and how she has found help along the way. Her dad has Parkinson's Disease and attends a program, Elderhaus, for people who are 55 years old and up. Elderhaus is a program that provides community and home based care. Season 2 is focused on help: getting help, asking for help, accepting help, offering help. We will explore the various ways in which caregivers have been in the help mode, and how they have addressed it. We will also have conversations with organizations and agencies that sometimes have the help we need. 
39:33
September 16, 2019
Bonus Episode: Ready For Anything
Jenn and Mar share their recent experience preparing for Hurricane Dorian, as well as, the focus of the second season of "This Caregiver Life".  Please follow us on our social media platforms. You can find us on Facebook at This Caregiver Life, on Twitter at ThisCargiverLife@ThisCaregiver, and on Instagram at thiscaregiverlife. Have something you want to share with us? Leave us a message! If you like us please give us a 5 star rating! 
38:38
September 6, 2019
E11: Worst Case Scenario
This episode is a rebroadcast of our companion podcast, Sarcasm Sisters. We relive Mar’s experience preparing for an enduring Hurricane Florence. Caregivers will find tips and suggestions when preparing for natural disasters themselves, and anyone can learn how to support caregivers during stressful times. Thanks for listening. Be sure to connect with us on social media @thiscaregiverlife on Facebook and @thiscaregiver on Twitter. You can also send us an email, thiscaregiverlife@gmail.com .
35:36
September 6, 2019
E10: Bringing Home the War with author Marjorie Pennington
Welcome to our last episode of Season One. Marjorie Pennington, author of "Bring Home the War: The Life of a Military Caregiver", joined us for an in-depth conversation about being a military caregiver to her husband. "Bringing Home the War" is a powerful story of faith, and commitment.  Marjorie says this: "This book is the culmination of a long journey. It wasn't a journey my  husband or I can say we chose, but rather it was one that chose us nonetheless. I decided to write this book as an insight into the life of being a  caregiver for military soldiers injured by war. I wanted to share our  journey so that it could inspire others going through similar battles  and also provide some insight into how to cope when the going gets  rough, as it inevitably does." As we close out Season One we thank all of our listeners for following us. We will be back in August with a kickoff to Season Two. To follow us on Facebook look for This Caregiver Life where we post articles, resources, and items of interest to caregivers throughout June and July. 
47:16
June 18, 2019
E9: Burnout with Jean Montjoy, MSW, LCSW
 Jean Montjoy joins us today in a candid conversation about burnout. Jean holds a masters in Social Work, and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She chats with us today about burnout from a professional caregiver perspective. She shares with us her journey as a social worker, how burnout sneaks up on her, and how she has addressed it. She is kind, compassionate, transparent, and overall good human. 
25:43
June 14, 2019
E8: Carrying On
Caira Benson is a seasoned professional in the nonprofit community, a homeschooling mother of five, and caregiver for her disabled veteran husband and three of their children. Her dedication to providing the best quality of life to her clan is inspirational. Join us as we learn about Caira's journey as a Hidden Hero, and we learn how she manages to even make time for herself.  Caira is an Elizabeth Dole Foundation Fellow, proudly representing South Dakota.  This is real life. This is Caregiver Life.  
45:16
May 8, 2019
E7: Veteran Directed Care - A Call To Action
Our guest today is Karee White, an Army veteran, married to an Army veteran for 30 years, mother to nine children...yes you read that correctly, and a caregiver to her daughter Kimmy. Kimmy is a wounded veteran with a severe traumatic brain injury. Veteran Directed Care is a VA program Kimmy is part of, and Karee almost can't live without.  Veteran Directed Care (VDC) is: The Veterans Directed Home and Community Based Services (VD-HCBS)  program is designed to allow veterans who are potential candidates for  nursing home placement to receive that level of care in their homes,  their caregivers' homes or in non-supportive, independent living  communities (not assisted living residences). The program provides  veterans with a budget and allows them to choose their own care  providers in place of receiving care services from the VA health care  system. In some cases, family members of the veteran can be paid for the  care they provide. (https://www.payingforseniorcare.com/longtermcare/resources/veterans-directed-hcbs.html#title3)
45:31
April 30, 2019
E6: Caring for Children with Severe Allergies
  Megan Smith is an Elizabeth Dole Foundation Fellow and joins us today as our guest. Megan is a caregiver to her husband who was injured in Afghanistan, and a mom of two boys. In addition to her beloved role of mom to her sons, one of them requires additional care. Her oldest has severe myopia, asthma, and food allergies. Megan is kind enough to give us an inside peek at how she juggles her responsibilities while also being a mom.  
34:52
April 23, 2019
E5: Cherish The Moments
Lara Garey is our guest on this podcast. Lara is the spouse, and caregiver, of an Air Force veteran with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, ALS. Lara is also a newly appointed Elizabeth Dole Foundation Fellow. In this podcast Lara does not hold back on how deep she is into the care giving role. She fit in this interview while her husband, Tom, was in ICU. 
39:54
April 16, 2019
E4 Self Care
What is self-care and why do we need it? Is your go-to self-care healthy? Is it working? Explore all things self-care in this episode of This Caregiver Life, and visit our Facebook page www.facebook.thiscaregivelife where you can ask questions, share ideas and learn more about caregiving. This is real life. This is our caregiver life.
52:27
March 12, 2019
E3: When Sepsis Strikes
Mar and Jenn have a frank conversation regarding sudden, serious illness: sepsis. Jenn is a sepsis survivor of two and a half years. Mar's spouse, Tom, in addition to having ALS for eight and a half years, recently survived sepsis. They share their personal experiences, and signs and symptoms of sepsis. 
44:23
February 12, 2019
E2: ALS - Roasting for Research
This Caregiver Life podcast today focuses on a unique fundraising effort for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: Roasting for Research. Please join us to learn more about this exceptional campaign that raises awareness, and funding, to help beat back ALS. 
19:50
January 20, 2019
E1: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of a Bathroom
In their opening 'This Caregiver Life' podcast Jenn and Mar, caregivers to their veterans, share their thoughts on Chicago O'Hare's new, accessible bathroom: “Changing Places Restroom”. 
32:56
January 11, 2019