Posts Tagged family

Don’t Miss the Bright Spots

I’ve been a caregiver for almost 6 years now and I’ve functioned that way in several different ways from hospitals to nursing homes, rehab hospitals and finally home. I’ll be the first to admit (as most will) that it’s not an easy job. At times I miss the BC (Before the Crash) life that I had. Being a caregiver offers no breaks, a huge loss of freedom and major changes. It can be so difficult to just keep putting one foot in front of the other. Areas that were not a struggle before, are now front-and-center-in-your-face. One thing that many do not realize about caregiving is that even the bright spots can be overshadowed by the situation. It’s almost like you aren’t allowed to enjoy the pleasures of life like others, or at least not to the same degree of enjoyment. But tonight I had a great bright spot and I held on to it because I didn’t want to miss it.

My daughter and the grand-babies were here for the evening. Well, I’ve been trying to get out and walk each evening and my daughter has also started walking for health reasons. Tonight we walked through the park to the splash pad on the other side and let the grands play in the water. It was so much fun watching them run and play and giggle as they got splashed by cool water. We laughed a lot – and that was nice.

As we began walking back to the apartment my grandson took my granddaughter’s hand. I was trying to capture a picture so my daughter began pushing my son in his wheelchair. That’s not an easy task as he weighs about 150 and the chair another 80. I found myself caught between the two – my daughter in front pushing my son and my two grandchildren behind. I was listening to the children’s chatter and heard things like Eli telling Kyrie that he was the big brother and she had to stay on the pathway because he didn’t want her to fall in the icky water. In that moment I took a mental freeze-frame shot. I wanted to savor it, remember it and let it be pleasurable. It was just a perfect evening and I gave myself permission to enjoy it.

As caregivers we can get so caught up in taking care of others that we fail to miss these kinds of bright spots. Our schedules and lives can be so rigid that they shroud the pleasantries. It’s okay to enjoy some things in life; it’s not against the rules. Maybe I’m learning how to live a little bit. It’s certainly not what I had imagined, and it’s definitely not the way I had my latter years planned. But it’s okay to laugh, play and enjoy things. There’s no telling what tomorrow might bring – how well we know that – so when we have these little bright spots — hold on to them  — let them be bright, don’t dim them with the gravity of the circumstances. It’s okay to live.

Enjoy the Moment - It's Okay to Live

Enjoy the Moment – It’s Okay to Live

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Happy Mother’s Day

I pray that each mother out there has a wonderful day with their children and grands today! We have our own festivities planned and I am attempting to take Chris to my mom’s house this afternoon. It looks like all of us siblings will be there together.

I think if I am brutally honest with myself I am having a pity party…a well deserved one I might add! lol! I am just overcome with all it takes to just take Chris out for a few hours. Honestly, I always dread all the work but once we go I will be fine and I’ll be glad we did! It is really good for him to get out I know. It’s really good to take him to family functions too…

The trouble is that I hurt my back messing around with his chair yesterday. I am taking maximum otc pain relievers right now and sitting on a heating pad to try to get some relief. I am sure it will be fine in a couple of days but it sure is frustrating. I am glad he can help so much with the transfers now…and I do have a plan of action that should work and make it easier on me for today…

I guess it’s just difficult for me to enjoy Mother’s Day when I see my son like this…I literally have to choose not to think about it and rather choose more positive things to think about while the obvious yells at me from across the room. I will choose rather to enjoy my daughter (who is a wonderful mother herself) and my grandson and son-in-law. They have been so much help to me over the last couple of years. I know they get tired…I try not to ever ask them for anything extra since they do so much to help…I will enjoy them and the rest of my family today.

I will also enjoy the fact that this year is the first Mother’s Day since Chris’ accident that he’s not in a nursing home! He’s here with me and still slowly progressing. I will choose to find the things I can be thankful for rather than the things that seem to dig at my emotions.

Paul told the Philippians something like that in Philippians 4:8. He told them to think on these things… then gave them a list of things to train their mind to stay on. That is my point of faith for today. As I go through the day when the depressing, oppressing or destructive thoughts come I will turn them to what is good, pure, honest and just… I will turn them to what I have seen God do over the last 2.5 years rather than what I wish He would do!

We’ll make it through this one! He still reigns!

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