You’re asking yourself what is the Sandwich Generation. The Sandwich Generation is a generation of people (usually in their 30s or 40s) who care for their aging parents while supporting their own children. How does that relate to us at Odysseys With Love? Megan has been caring for her 77-year-old mother for the last few years, and the burden has gotten stronger as time goes on. I struggle to maintain schedules between my mother and also for my young children. This site isn’t just about travel, we have family and love too. Who can be more family that the woman that raised and cared for me?
Photography and the Sandwich Generation
Billie, Megan’s mother, hates photos of herself. I can understand why. I posted that I had just booked a photoshoot for us, but there is something more. The last family photograph the girls and I took was at JCPenney’s a few years ago. That was just the girls and I and I couldn’t get my mother to participate in it. When I started to book this appointment as a branding style photoshoot I asked our Photographer, Starling Photography, if she was able to make the shoot even for one image, if I could pay the additional sitting fee at the time of our shoot. I am so thankful for her understanding of this.
My mother even though she feels she is not photographable, has agreed if she has the strength to make it, she will be in our family portraits. Then asked if I was going to have James in them. Uh, yes, we may not be married, but he is now family. I will have family portraits that we can cherish for years to come, even if this will be the last photograph that we have with her in them. The last photograph we have included my dad, and I was only a few years old.
How I Juggle being part of the Sandwich Generation?
Lately, mom’s health has been rapidly declining. She has to have help getting to the bathroom. She is not able to fix her own meals. Billie is stuck in the house if I do not help her go somewhere. I help with her medications, and I am an ear when she needs someone to talk to. Then we have the children. Skyler has an issue with her eyes blacking out, a learning disability, and has hit her preteen years. Rhyan, well let’s just say she is still a toddler that thinks she is a mini adult. I am constantly running after one of the three. When I meet James, I started juggling a boyfriend and starting a life with him.
Wanderlust is calling. Even with my mom’s health failing, dealing with a toddler and preteen, and a boyfriend. I feel guilty about the wanderlust that has been calling me. “I want adventure in the great wide somewhere, I want it more than I can tell…”
Finding Help with the Sandwich Generation
Being part of the Sandwich Generation has kept us here local and with only a few short weekend trips away. Jame’s has been understanding of the pressures that have been placed on me. Even when my mother was taken to the hospital the other night, he offered to call off work and come home to help me with the girls. I told him no, that it was alright. I was only around the corner. Like when we went to Padre Island National Seashore, I called my neighbors Bill and Nancy. Nancy even came over to check on the girls while we were at the hospital. It helps that they run BNG’s Barkington Inn, so when we are away even my dog is taken care of. They really are a great couple. So when we are gone, I have a little bit of help.
What About Siblings and Help?
I have one older brother, but he is no help and has been cut off from my mother. They seem to want nothing to do with each other. I can not ask him to help with her care, and all he will want to do is put her in a home and never visit her. In my opinion that is a fate worse than death. I get it, she can be crude and doesn’t always think before she speaks. But, after everything that she has done for him, and how he has always treated his “family” I do not want nor need him in our lives. I will be caring for her until she is no longer with us.
Sandwich Generation and the RV
We all know that we are looking at buying an RV. We recently posted about the Jayco and about us visiting the SuperShow. One thing in all these we have not mentioned is the fact that with a motorhome rather than a travel trailer or 5th wheel, we would be able to take my mother with us when we go on adventures. There are several beds in the one that we are looking at. This way, Billie would be comfortable as we travel. She could lay down if needed, sit in the booth or couch if she couldn’t stay laying down. My only fear with this is, can she get in and out of the home on wheels?
Where This Blog Helps
The blog helps more than most will know. It is my outlet. I love writing and being able to put words down to my thoughts. The second part of this is I want to make money, I would like for the site to at least support itself in the coming years. I read where other bloggers have earned a huge income like those at Its A Lovely Life. If in a few years and my mom is still with us, I would take part of that income and let her choose what she wants to be done when I can no longer care for her medically. I want her to be able to have that choice.
How do you cope with being apart of the sandwich generation? Let us know down in the comments.