11 Reasons Why It's Okay to be Crabby


11 Reasons Why It's Okay to be Crabby

crab-apples-51558_640Oh, you're crabby.

And, the looks and comments you get about your crabbiness just add a heavy layer of guilt. So, you're crabby and guilty at the same time.

I'm here to tell you that you can get rid of the guilt and embrace your crabbiness. Don't fall into the trap of believing you must excuse or apologize for your crabbiness. You're caring for a family member or friend with chronic, challenging, complicated needs. Oh, and you're trying to keep your own life along the way.

You've got every reason to be crabby. Just to prove that to you, I've got 11 reasons why it's okay for you to be crabby.

1. You haven't slept since 1964. Or so it seems. You're up to help your caree or you're up because you're worried or you're up because the laundry doesn't fold itself.

2. You've done 100 loads of laundry just this week. And that's on the low end of the estimate. You're doing laundry that will send the strongest cowering to the corner. Whatever you see and whatever you find, you avoid the deep breaths, spray with OxyClean and set the washer to "Heavy Soil."

3. You're just about to make your 10th phone call to your caree's insurance company in as many days to get a service covered, a question answered or an appeal that's been denied appealed again. These aren't five-minute phone calls, either. You're picking up the phone call, ready for the marathon that this will become.

4. You're getting grief from a family member who can't visit, who can't call, who can't help. She just can't. Whatever.

5. You're feeling the grief from all you've lost--a family member now replaced by your caree, a lifestyle that once featured spontaneity and fun. Sometimes when you watch your caree, you just can't stop the tears. And, other days, when you think about what was your life, you can't help but ache.

6. You're grappling with tough choices about how you should spend your day, how you should spend the money, how you should spend your time. And, no how matter how you often count and re-count, you just can't spend in a way that eases all the worries.

7. You're looking into a tomorrow that will be just like today. And, that's a day that's full of too much and too little but not in the right doses. During caregiving, every day is Monday and there are no holidays.

8. You just drove like a maniac, cursing and screaming at other drivers, the red lights, the traffic so you and your caree can wait and wait and wait in the doctor's office. You rush just to wait.

9. You can't find what you need. You've called, searched, asked, begged, badgered. Our communities just don't have the needs of family caregivers on the radar screen. So, you have to fly under the radar (or over it or around it) and that's nothing less than exhausting.

10. You just ordered pizza for dinner even though you had left-over pizza for lunch and, oh, by the way, for breakfast. But, cooking means groceries which means another errand. You are errand-weary.

11. You just heard for the 5,000th time that you have to take care of yourself. Well, duh, you think. And, then you wonder, "What could have sparked that comment?. Could it be the large dark circles under my eyes? The stained shirt--my only clean-ish shirt--I'm wearing?" Of course you want to take care of yourself. And, every day, you do your best to do just that. Instead of advice, you would really just love to hear, "You are amazing. What you do and how you do it is incredible. You truly are a very special person."

You're crabby. It's okay. Because you also are amazing. What you do and how you do it is incredible. You truly are a very special person.

(What did I miss? Feel free to add your reasons why it's okay to be crabby in our comments section, below.)