"I wish I had been able to read this book about 30 years ago when I began caring for my husband. It would have been such a wonderful guide to assist me with my emotions (dealing with the ups and downs and guilt) and care giving information (hospitals and hospice). But...as it stands, I read the book after my husband passed away and yet...it was still extremely helpful!!!
Caroline, sharing her emotional state was the most helpful for me after my husband died. I was the primary caregiver and at times I would get so frustrated and would want to either run away or cry. Then I would feel so guilty about those thoughts--thinking I was just so uncaring...when all I really needed was to take time for me. I was still having some of the guilt feelings before I read Caroline's book, but after reading how she felt and dealt with her own emotions...I felt she was just like me - a loving caregiver that just needed a break and it was normal to have those feelings now and then. I am much happier now.
I would highly recommend When Family Calls to anyone who is in the process of caring for someone who is in need of medical assistance. Which seems like it should be everyone---as at some point, the people we love will need hospital or hospice care.
Thank you, Caroline, for sharing your book and yourself with me!!
With Kindness," Rebecca Fonner, Kalamazoo Mi
"Finally! A beautifully written caregiver's memoir, filled with insight, heart and tons of practical information. Caroline shows us what a tough balancing act—both emotional and physical—we've either chosen or been called on to undertake. It’s not just another how-to book. Caroline shows us by example—the how-to is a bonus takeaway delivered through a compelling story that’s hard to put down."
President/Founder, The Caregiver Space, Inc.
“The journey she takes us on, the stories she tells us compels us to listen. We learn so much from her and need to thank her for bringing us into the world of caregiving with such detail and personal honesty. Her story will help us avoid the missteps, lessen the physical and emotional stress of caregiving and provide us with the support and resources that comes from her sharing the lessons she had to learn firsthand.”
—Dr. William Steele
Founder, The National Institute for Trauma and Loss in Children (TLC)
A few days ago I found your book under one of my piles of "books to be read". A true page turner. Wonderful inspiration.
5.0 out of 5 stars This Book is for Everyone!
Reviewed in the United States on January 15, 2018
I highly recommend “When Family Calls – Finding Hope in the Chaos of Long-Distance Caregiving” written by Caroline Sheppard, MSW.
I loved this book! Through her courageous transparency and expertise in relationship building, the author shares a beautiful and poignant personal account filled with relevant information for anyone who receives a call from family, friends or loved ones needing support through a crisis.
We live in a fast-paced, ever-changing modern world in which problems are not easily solved and require input from various people and systems. Posing challenges in the best of times but navigating such environments through life-changing events is particularly daunting.
As the author shares her story, we learn valuable techniques and insights as she takes us through her transformative learning experience; offering us a roadmap as a guide in the face of complexity.
We learn that “taking care of ourselves” is fundamental in the journey and cannot be overstated. When confronting ongoing intensity and stretching beyond comfort zones again, and again, we need to draw fully from our mental, physical, emotional and intuitive capacity to support the process. If we allow ourselves to deteriorate, we are susceptible to fatigue, reactionary responses, and ultimately poor decision-making. For sustainable success; good self-care is a must!
When faced with numerous barriers the author draws from a holistic framework. She turns to basics such as reflection; research (both academic and information gathering from experts); a supportive network and utilizing concepts such as surrendering and forgiveness, as essential practices.
Complex environments demand that we manage conflict and paradox such as resistance to change. Resistance is a natural part of any change process and is particularly intense when someone feels a threat to his or her identity. The author helps us understand thoughtful ways to manage these emotions while preserving a person’s dignity and prioritizing their safety.
As we move through the book, we see patterns emerge as the author steps outside her normal roles facing painful experiences; as she challenges her beliefs and assumptions and eventually shifts her perspective. She learns when to step back allowing others to take control, and when to lean in and assert expectations without compromise.
This book highlights a loving, tried and true path to transformational change. A change so deep it not only changes the person in crisis but (if we allow it) it changes us, the caregiver too. The author reveals courage and fortitude in facing an unwelcomed reality while staying engaged, fully present and heart-centered as she provides unconditional, wise and compassionate care to her loved ones. I found “When Family Calls” nourishing for the mind and soul. Absorb and practice what is in this book, and I know you will be better for it.
Sandy Carter, Ph.D., MBA, MSW, Professional Certified Coach, PCC
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommend When Family Calls!
Reviewed in the United States on November 20, 2017
I just finished reading When Family Calls. The book is filled with helpful information, tips and references. Aside from the help that it offers caregivers, it's also a really good read and I couldn't put it down. It really resonated with me on an emotional level having experienced the long distance challenges of dealing with family member's illnesses and deaths. It's comforting to know that many of the feelings I experienced are shared by others and a typical response to this situation.
I highly recommend this book
Ellen van Eijnsbergen
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written, inspiring and instructive..."When Family Calls" is a must read for any and all caregivers...
Reviewed in the United States on December 18, 2017
Give yourself an early Christmas present and read this book. The author's courageous journey motivates us to answer the caregiving calls in our own lives. Her empathic guidance prepares the reader for every aspect of the caregiving experience and encourages effective long term support for our loved ones. Her resilience and wisdom are a tutorial in transforming an overwhelming reality into a manageable and rewarding gift.
Carolyn Lalli, M.D.,
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read
Reviewed in the United States on March 7, 2018
i loved the book.it was a great read!! thankyou
Wonderful book. A must for everyone
5.0 out of 5 stars Such a loving tribute by a great daughter and sister
Reviewed in the United States on May 6, 2018
Such a loving tribute by a great daughter and sister, very compassionate and caring !!!A great read !!! Know and love the family , thank you Lin!!!
5.0 out of 5 stars You need to discuss and decide your future care with family now.
Reviewed in the United States on January 28, 2018
Caroline Sheppard has done all of us a service in sharing her very long and personal story caring for multiple family members in her new book "When Family Calls". With lots of insight and an intimate portrayal of her day to day struggles caring for elderly and sick family members and in the end providing their end of life care her book offers a treasure chest full of good insight and advice. If you feel you and your loved ones will live forever and never get sick, this is not the book for you. Mrs. Sheppard clearly teaches us that all of us one day will face illness and our end days and the time is now not later to prepare. One of the main points in her book is to be prepared way ahead of time. All of us put off letting our families know what our last wishes will be and in doing so when the emergency comes at 2 AM Saturday night none of us are prepared to deal with the multitude of decisions that need to be made. In
the end her book offers hope and provides a detailed understanding of what is to come for all of us and ways to mitigate most difficult situations.
E. Rawson Griffin III MD
5.0 out of 5 stars One woman's compassion and ceaseless love for her family, while she navigates the caregiving journey.
Reviewed in the United States on November 9, 2017
Caroline Sheppard's book "When Family Calls" is filled with such emotion and meticulous detail of her caregiving experiences with her family, the reader feels as if they are with her on the caregiving journey. Caroline's written expression of her individual family members story also helps the reader to validate their own feelings, as they embrace their personal caregiving experience.
This book is a valuable support tool for anyone who is asked to step in and care for a family member or friend, no matter what age or circumstance.
The resources that the author provides for assisting and navigating the medical chaos that one experiences during this journey is invaluable.
It was heart rendering to hear how Caroline responded to each family members crisis with such compassion and love, while maintaining their dignity.
A "must read" just to be part of the author's heartfelt journey.
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book!!! You’ll learn a lot!!!
Reviewed in the United States on January 24, 2019
I am a caregiver for my adult son, and find myself lately looking for help with doing the mundane daily tasks, along with making financial decisions, care decisions, end of life decisions - all this while making sure my son’s quality of life is as good as possible. I found “When Family Calls” to be helpful on so many levels!! I found myself reading a few chapters, and then having to take a break for a day to absorb it all. I put off reading the last chapter because i knew it would be a difficult one, and i didn’t want the book to be done! I HIGHLY recommend this book to any caregiver, or anyone considering being a caregiver. It hits on every possible situation that might be encountered, and shows the reader how to handle things.
5.0 out of 5 stars If you are a caregiver you must purchase this book!
Reviewed in the United States on September 27, 2018
Caregiving is one of the most heart wrenching and loving time in one's life. The author gives tips, resources and personal insights during caring not just one or two loved one, but five the through the years. She is an angel for caring for others and taking the time for writing this book.
Every caregiver must have this book.