The longest journey you’ll ever take is from the head to the heart. ~ Regina Rosenthal
As we come to the end of the 5th week of palliative radiation treatments, the word ‘journey’ keeps resonating with me. Our recent journey with Hospice of Broward County proved to be bumpy; we’ve moved on from that bumpy road and have brought in new ‘friends’ to help us continue on with our journey. We’re hoping for smooth sailing as we forge ahead on our ‘new’ path.
There are so many components when planning a journey. GPS devices have become the fad; some might even spread out an old fashion map on their kitchen table to highlight the path of the journey. Planning a caregiving journey is a little more difficult than planning a road trip, or is it?
When we are planning a journey, there is usually someone who is in charge, a leader, guide, pilot, etc. All those fancy electronic devices that help plan a journey goes for not if there is not a leader orchestrating the plan. The lesson that I’ve learned during our recent caregiving journey is that I’m the co-pilot, ‘TLO’ is the pilot. ‘TLO’ is the one going through the radiation treatments, ‘TLO’ is the one taking the medicine, ‘TLO’ is the one that has the cancer inside of his body. For me to assume that I know how he feels, pales in comparison to his reality of his health and how he feels.
There is no doubt that we are both on this journey together; we share in the emotions, we share in the joy and we share in the sorrow during this journey. We both know that there is a fork in the road that lies ahead of us that no map or GPS will detect. We also know that trying to dodge that fork in the road will be unavoidable. The ‘funny’ thing about that fork in the road is that at some point in our life, each one of us will find its path and end up at the same destination. As family caregivers, we try to pave the road so that when that fork does arrive, there is a gentle breeze at our back. Caregiving is often filled with so many raw emotions that sometimes we forget that we are on a beautiful journey together. That’s why sometimes the longest journey that we will ever take is from the head to the heart.
While we know that the fork in the road will take us on a different path and we understand that we will end up at our destination at different times. For now, we will continue on our journey together as pilot and copilot creating, and enjoy that a gentle breeze at our back that no map or GPS device can locate for us.
Thank you for being our copilots; we are pleased that you are on this journey with us helping us create that gentle breeze at our back!
You see…We might have cancer, but Cancer does not have us!
- 10 Tips for Family Caregivers: Beating the After-Break Break-Up (caregiving.com)
- The Call For Hospice (caregiving.com)
- Little Difference in Caregiving Responsibilities Between Working and Non-Working Family Caregivers (caregiving.com)
- 10 Tips for Family Caregivers: 10 Great Apps (caregiving.com)
- In November, Share Your 10 Best Caregiving Tips (caregiving.com)
- Your Caregiving Journey: What Does Burn-Out Feel Like? (caregiving.com)