So, last year I posted during Carer's week and posed the question: Who cares about the Carer's? I received lots of emails and messages in response to it.
Here in Victoria we are currently 'celebrating' Carer's week. Which basically means we all give ourselves a pat on the back or a 'hi-five' for being so wonderful.
I think I found one event happening here in Ballarat. And that was it.
There has hardly been any mention of it. Anywhere.
So my questions remains. Except this time I am adding a word or two to it: Who the bloody hell cares about Carer's?
Well, the government does of course. We save them 40.3 billion every single year by taking care of our loved ones ourselves. They do gives us $110 a fortnight in return to help us out. So WOW. That is awesome.
Many people will use their words and express that Carer's do an amazing job. Uh-huh. Yet that is usually the extent of their support. A few words dropped here and there. Ok. Cool. Thanks.
I think the reality is that most people are just glad it isn't them. It is easier to just ignore Carers and figure someone else is probably helping them-or worse-that they are 'so strong' they don't need anyone.
Most Carer's would love more support.
They would jump at the opportunity to have someone help out every now and then. To actually offer and not just wait for the Carer to ask.
Money would be bloody awesome too if you are listening government. Because having to beg all the time for money just to have basic stuff is really not cool.
So this Carer's week, if you know someone who is a Carer, instead of giving them a pat on the back, do what Carer's Victoria are suggesting and buy them a coffee (that would work for me...!!).
In all seriousness, at the end of the day, being a Carer, as well as a parent, is who I am. It is bloody hard work (especially when child who is being cared for vomits most nights in the middle of the night). But I will do it with love and strength for the rest of my life. With or without extra money from the government. With or without respite. With or without anyone caring.
I care about Carer's. I know so many wonderful people who are Carer's. Exhaustion may be their current state, but they are all the most generous and loving people I am priviledged to know.
So do you care about Carer's? How do you show it? Is it a phone call or message every now and then to see how they are? Is it a catch up for a cuppa every now and then? Is it just saying you are there if you need them? I reckon if you do that, then you DO care about Carer's!