Taking care of declining older relatives (and small update on me)

I can see the light at the end of my horrific commute tunnel. There are three factors that have combined to set me free: 1) When my younger son turned 5, we switched custody so the kids are at my place 3 nights a week, their dad's three nights a week, and we swing the other night. So far everyone's been loving it. 2) My kids' dad will be off work for the summer at the end of next week, so he'll have the kids during the day in the summer. 3) Next year both kids will be at the same school.

So next year during the school year, I'll have three days of dropping off both kids at one place and then going to work myself (65 minutes down from 100 minutes), and two days of taking myself to work because my kids' dad will be in charge of getting them to school.

But enough about me and my sudden liberation.

Can we talk about straddling dealing with kids and aging parents, or just supporting parents dealing with *their* aging parents?

I'm in the second situation, watching my mom simultaneously trying to help care for her mother from a distance and caring for her mother-in-law in the same city. It's a hundred layers of guilt, between what she feels and what I feel.

I can't imagine how it would feel if it was my mother who was sick or declining and I had to make decisions that were directly affecting her quality of life.

Can we talk about coping methods and ways to make things better for everyone involved?

The only thing I can think of to really help my mom is to be a willing listener when she needs to vent, and to show up physically whenever I can to take some of the pressure off.

I wish there was more I could do, and I know lots of you are in the same situation.

Any ideas to help make this easier on everyone?