I’m experiencing a unique time in my life. For the first time in over six years, there is no immediate, pressing, red-letter emergency brewing. I haven’t been to the Emergency Room in months. No one is in the hospital. No rushed trips home, only a few urgent phone calls. It’s been weird.
Mind you, I remain as busy as ever. Mom is still a dementia patient residing full time in an Alzheimer’s facility. Mom readily admits she doesn’t know who I am but she’s happy and my visits almost always involve laughter and play. I’m still a single parent with a young adult with special needs and a teenager living at home. I still work full time (when the federal government doesn’t have me on Furlough). I still average four to five hour of sleep per night. But I’ve managed to find time to start a new personal relationship and the lack of crisis has been startling.
You know the old saying, “If you have nothing good to say, don’t say anything at all”? I realize now that I had fallen into the reverse thinking. “If I didn’t have a complaint or problem to write about, I didn’t have anything to say” which couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Who doesn’t need good news? Who doesn’t need to know that there are calm, peaceful days and seasons in this journey of caregiving, that it doesn’t have to always be moment-to-moment, by the skin of your teeth, barely making it by, that there are times when people cooperate, the systems works, your loved one is content and you have no excuse for not getting much needed rest. That you can be a caregiver and still find time for a personal life. Weird, huh?!?!
As has been well written here before, success comes from forming and using your team. It does take a village. Caregiving.com has been an invaluable source of encouragement (still think that @Denise has been cloned into several people working simultaneously). Having a full-time facility for Mom has been crucial. My faith and religious community have been critical components. For all of these reasons I take no credit for the peace I’m currently enjoying.
But it sure is nice!
- Caregiver Becomes the Caregivee (caregiving.com)
- Who Speaks for the Speechless? (caregiving.com)
- Co-Caregiving: Recognizing the Pitfalls and Avoiding the Sinkholes (caregiving.com)
- Avoiding Self-Pity (caregiving.com)
- Did I Eat That? (caregiving.com)
- Somewhere In The Rainbow There Is That Pot Of Gold (caregiving.com)
- Fighting Depression During Caregiving (caregiving.com)
- Frustrating Night (caregiving.com)
- Beginning the Transition to More Help (caregiving.com)