Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Caregiving

The economic news requires digesting. No question. Something I think we miss in this busy day and age, is settin' on the porch, thinkin' time. This is allowed. This is a gift you can give yourself. Judy's blog, "Every Day is a Gift", is a good one. This is the time to regroup, rethink and process what is going on.

Some days you just have to give yourself permission to "let go and let God", or the Universe, Spirit, or whatever your spirituality point, to take over. This is the time to let that 'still, small voice' enter your mind, body, spirit and soul. Women are very good at feeling guilt. We need to let it go. We put food in the freezer to preserve it. Sometimes we need to do this for our souls.

When I was giving palliative care to my father I was so numb, as well as being in a depression. I gave myself permission to just 'be' on days when I needed it. I gave myself permission to let my husband look after me: meals, housekeeping, dishes, while I concentrated on simply feeding dad one meal a day. I left the LTC home crying most days. It was awfully difficult. But I made it through by only solving problems and carrying out the activities I felt like doing. That was the gift I gave myself.

One thing I did not do well was to reach out and accept help from agencies that could be there for me. I found the Cancer Society peer program too late. I could have phoned a spiritual advisor, but did not. I was weak, fragile, tired and stressed. Accepting such help is a gift you can allow others to make. It is a gift that friends and family can give to so many who are fulfilling a role as a caregiver.

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