What If We Find Our Life in Caregiving?

Denise
flowering_tree_colorLast night on Your Caregiving Journey, we took your calls in answer to this question, Do we win only if we lose? You can listen to our show via the player below.

The inspiration for last night's show was a commentary I posted on Tuesday (ARGH! It's Not About Putting Your Life on Hold). I wrote about an award honoring family caregivers; the organizer of the award, when asked what he's looking for in the nominations, said: We're looking for family caregivers who put their lives on hold.

We had a great discussion during last night's show, which runs about 50 minutes. We took a call from Beth, who cares for her mom and interrupted her night out with her husband to share her thoughts. Beth spoke about the compromises she made in caring for her mom and how those compromises ultimately led to more opportunities than she could have imagined. She has her own blog (CaregiversUnite.org), volunteers to help others, and contributes to her local newspaper. Beth also spoke about what her caregiving experience gave her--love for her mother. Because of the time she spends with her mom, she's learned to love her.

In essence, her caregiving experience gave her a different life but a life she loves and which fills her with pride.

@Trish echoed Beth's comments, adding that Robert has enriched her life. She and her husband (@kreisler) involve Robert in their life--their life has not stopped for caregiving.

We took our last call from @thpurplejacket, who added another perspective: We don't put our life on hold, he said, we care for another life. When caring for his friend, Father Orlando, Chris often heard this question from others in his life: Why are you putting your life on hold? Chris cherishes the time he had with Father Orlando, which was and is a very meaningful part of his life.

We also spoke about the difficulties in caregiving--acknowledging its inherent challenges and frustrations. Trish said she does have moments when she wonders if she's made the right decision to be a family caregiver. But these are just moments, she said. She shared how happy Robert is to be living with her and Richard, which makes her decision more than right.

After you've had a chance to listen to our show, please feel free to share your comments, below. And, please feel free to share your thoughts about my commentary here.


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