Why I Chose to Blog


Why I Chose to Blog

Last summer, I was in over my head. At best, I was treading water, but there were those awful moments when I felt as though I was drowning. I couldn't figure this out. The major crises were over, for now anyway. My parents were safely tucked away in assisted living and, although I still needed to do a lot for them, at least I knew they were being looked after and someone was always close by in case of an emergency. Why did I feel so overwhelmed and depressed?drowning

Looking back, what makes the most sense is that I realized this was not going to go away. Caregiving had become the new normal in my life and I felt stuck. Even without realizing the reason, I knew I had to make some changes in my attitude and my mood. But how?

At one point, I talked with one of the staff at the facility and asked some questions about how to handle hoarding. When she saw how upset I was (I was getting way too upset over everything), she said she would ask the head nurse to see if she could suggest a support group. I never heard back. So, I went looking on my own. It's difficult to find a group to go to in person when you have no time to join a group. It's also hard to join a group talking about typical elder issues when your parent has issues which are not typical. I went online.

After finding many support groups and not wanting to join a rant fest (okay, we all need to rant--sometimes), I found this group. I was drawn to the blogs immediately because that's also how I deal with my own health journey. I was impressed with the variety of activities and ways to share. I like the contests and poetry corner and the ability to share photos.

When my daughter was in 6th grade, the teacher called with concerns about our daughter being depressed, and asked to meet us and have a conference. As my husband and I got ready to go, our daughter came to us and exploded. If we were going to talk to her teacher, would we please tell him he is moving way too fast in class. It wasn't just her, a lot of the students were talking about this and a lot of them were struggling. (I'm a teacher and, yes, they were moving too fast.)

At the conference, we delivered the message, but I'm afraid it was seen as, perhaps a way for us to divert the real issue of our daughter's depression. We were told she needed to see a doctor. They, the teacher and the remedial specialist, were fine with her seeing a holistic doc, so we went. Our daughter was prescribed a remedy and she took it for a few days, I think. I'm sure it didn't hurt her. Really, though, she had brightened up as soon as she knew her message had been delivered. It didn't matter that it didn't change anything. What matters is that she got it communicated.

feather-pen-and-paper-clipart-k7243839The teachers patted themselves on the back for a job well done. Our daughter wasn't depressed anymore, obviously because they had done the right thing and made the right suggestion. I don't fault them for being concerned or for thinking their suggestions had worked. I wonder how many times I patted myself on the back for successes that belonged to my students? I was disappointed they didn't take my daughter's concerns seriously. That's my issue. She's in college now and, as long as she can pass this math course, she's good. If she doesn't pass, our standard response is, "Do you know more now than before you took the class? yes? Then you didn't fail." She wants to pass, so I'm rooting for her.

Blogging is a way to get all those questions and feelings and frustrations out of our heads. It's different from keeping a journal. People respond to you when you blog. There's feedback and it matters. We know someone out there is listening and taking us seriously.

I feel better already.

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Goldie, when I read your blog, I thought of a passage I read in the book, \"Women, Food and God\", by Geneen Roth. When I read this passage I get choked up every time, my daughter gets choked up and it came immediately to mind when I read about your daughter. \n\"Can you imagine how your life would have different if each time you were feeling sad or angry as a kid an adult said to you, \"Come here, sweetheart, tell me all about it.\" If when you were overcome with grief at your best friend's rejection, someone said to you, \"Oh darling, tell me more. Tell me where you feel those feelings. Tell me how your body feels, your chest. I want to know every little thing. I'm here to listen to you, hold you, be with you.\"\n\nI guess I feel my inadequacy to offer this kind of support for my daughter when she needed it as a child and she knows it, and I think forgives me for it. Now I know what I want most for my granddaughter, to be that listener; and that's what I want for all of us here, it's all we want.


I know exactly how you feel Goldie. Even now that mom and dad are gone the need to blog about the experience continues. This is such a great place to be able to find support for caregivers, not matter who you care for or what the circumstances are. I have so enjoyed reading about your life. Please continue.


You nailed it, Goldie! And I appreciate you sharing with us here!


Exactly. \n\n:)\n\nI first heard about blogging in 2005 and become rather obsessed with figuring out how to turn CareGiving.com into a blog, but not just one blog but a place where anyone in a caregiving experience could blog. It took me a few years to figure it out but I am so glad I stuck it out to figure it out. I am grateful every day for everyone who blogs here--the stories we share are just incredible. \n\nThe best coping strategy I've found as I care for my parents is my blog. I mentally hug it every day.\n\nI'm sooooo glad you joined us and that you started a blog. I love getting to know you and hearing about your days. You bless us.