I wish I had kept a journal right from the beginning.
I did start about three years ago and it’s been helpful in a practical way to be able to look back to see how things have progressed or regressed.
I keep track of behavioral changes, medical changes, reports from MDs, reports from the nurses at assisted living, the days I visited, the activities we did, changes I noticed, good and bad, the special events, family visitors, conversations with the staff, etc. It’s very helpful when talking to medical professionals, both new ones and the ones who have been treating her but not seeing her as frequently as I have.
There is no right or wrong way to do it. To get started, choose a method that works for you. Could be a pen and notebook.
I found at one point that writing an email and sending it to myself was a good way. Then I’d save the emails in a folder.
More recently I’ve have been doing a Word doc, just keep adding to it.
Occasionally I’ve used my iPad, while I’m there visiting, write a note using the Note app and then email it to myself.
I don’t focus too much on spelling, grammar or a specific topic – simply let my thoughts or observations flow. Each entry is about 3 to 5 sentences and is dated.
Some of the literature says journaling is good to relieve caregiver stress, I don’t see it that way. But if it is helpful here is an article about that – Journaling is an effective way to reduce caregiver stress