Extend the Right of Way

SENI on Dementia MapSubmitted by Deanna Vigliotta
National Sales Manager
TZMO USA Inc. – Seni

Many people have heard the phrase that Rosalynn Carter said best: “There are only four kinds of people in the world: those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers, and those who will need caregivers.”  

I believe there is a fifth kind of person in the world: those who empathize with caregivers.

Putting into Perspective

Did you know that 17% of adult children will take care of their parents at some point in their lives? For quick perspective, if you are married and had a big wedding with 200 guests, 34 of your guests will statistically end up being family caregivers.

If you work for a medium sized company with 400 employees, 68 of your coworkers may be taking care of their parents during the night while working alongside you each day. For many adult children, unfortunately their new role as family caregiver will come with added stress, exhaustion, financial strains, and hopefully some new favorable memories too.

Empathy is the Goal

For any of us who have co-workers taking care of their parents, friends taking care of their parents, and/or neighbors who are living with their parents to care for them, it is important for all of us to empathize and do our best to walk in the shoes of others.

While we live in a world that focuses on fixing things, fixing problems, fixing people, etc., perhaps one of the best gifts we can offer to family caregivers is to provide compassionate empathy versus trying to provide a “fix”.  An ear to listen, being truly present in hearing what the family caregiver is sharing with you and giving 30 minutes of time when you only had 15 minutes available of time, are a couple of examples of reasonable ways to show empathy.

If a coworker, friend, or neighbor appears moody or quick to react to a situation, take a pause yourself before reacting and remember what they may be going through in their own personal life caring for their mom or dad.

If any of us are so lucky in our lives to be only the fifth kind of caregiver without being any of the other four kinds, let’s count our blessings together and extend a right of way to all others.

While National Caregivers Day is observed on the third Friday each February and National Family Caregivers Month is celebrated each November, the poem “Changing Lanes – An ode to children taking care of parents with Alzheimer’s Disease” was written with the intent of honoring caregivers year-round.

Changing Lanes

An ode to children taking care of parents with Alzheimer’s Disease


SENI on Dementia Map - Road AnimationCan you imagine a time 
When your care roles reverse
Small reunion with siblings
Overwhelming tasks to disperse

No prep and untrained
Strategic plan based on love
Unwanted change
Seeking strength from above

Cognitive loss
Affecting Mom or a Dad
Brings memories back
Of all that you had

Alzheimer’s Disease
Presents such strange irony
As when care roles reverse
It’s the memories you see

As long as there’s life
And pockets of fun
New memories unfold
For daughter or son

No rhyme and no reason
As to when roles change lanes
The best part of “human”?
Love for parent remains







TZMO Seni USA on Dementia MapDeanna Vigliotta
TZMO USA Inc. – Seni

Deanna Vigliotta is the National Sales Manager for TZMO USA Inc. – Seni.

Visit TZMO USA Inc. – Seni on Dementia Map or on their website.

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