Anna Nahlupin finds peace in her garden. When she isn’t running around taking her family between school, activities, and doctors appointments, it’s how she finds some solace.
“I like to do this stuff usually when kids are already inside and I’m quiet,” said Nahlupin.
But quiet is sometimes hard to come by. Nahlupin has a large family and they like being together.
She’s also responsible for her their care. Nahlupin is the designated representative for her son, Valery, born with spina bifida, and also manages the personal care for her uncle, Anatoly, who has Down syndrome.
“I have to manage everything. It’s like manager’s work,” said Nahlupin.
Nahlupin is considered a “sandwich caregiver,” someone who is responsible for family members a generation above and below her. According to the Pew Research Center, 12% of parents fall into this category.
The National Alliance for Caregiving & Caring Across Generations estimates one-third of sandwich caregivers experience high emotional stress, while a fifth deal with financial strain.
Nahlupin gets paid through Consumer Directed Choices, which she said has made the process much easier.
“I make my own schedule. Even if my kids sick, I can always get PTO time and it’s comfortable for me,” said Nahlupin.
Being a such a close family, Nahlupin said it’s a privilege to be able to care for her loved ones, no matter how stressful it can be. Working with CDChoices has given her some flexibility.
While it is a lot of work, the little things go a long way.
“You have to listen a lot. Like sometimes he’s telling a story, well you know, you have to listen,” says Nahlupin.
Because at the end of the day, she believes it’s nice to have the family looking out for each other.