Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Caregiving’

So I’m a day late (and a dollar short, as my dad would say), but I celebrated today by being on my own and doing things for myself. I’m realizing more and more how sadly lacking is balance in my life and that I must make every effort to reclaim it. First, I did a few chores around the house, generally tidying and cleaning a bit and getting rid of stagnant energy. This afternoon I went to a support group sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Society. It’s led by a woman I truly admire and respect, and even though I’ve attended these sessions before, I love hearing her stories and thus always get something out of them. She is certainly sharing her gifts with the world!

I had a huge box of old bills and receipts from years ago, plus another box of old mail, old bills, receipts, flyers. ALL GONE. I feel terrific. There’s a large black garbage bag sitting next to another large box of already discarded papers, all awaiting my trip to the shredder in a couple of weeks. (I have more to do, but only two more shopping bags plus another box that’s already been sorted once and needs putting away–or not.) The more I have them, the more I love purging parties. 😀 When I’m done–hopefully by the end of tomorrow–I’ll smudge, and welcome the new energy back into my space. Cleaning. Clearing. Calming. BALANCE.

And so in this time of rebirth and renewal, I’m working on renewing myself. I feel as if I’m coming out of a long, deep, stultifying sleep, as if I’m awakening from hibernation. Every day I’m feeling a little more connected to myself again. Certainly this is a time of changing cycles, isn’t it?

Read Full Post »

STOP TRYING TO FIX ME. LOVE ME INSTEAD.

Please, don’t try to fix me. I am not broken. I have not asked for your solutions.

When you try to fix me, you unintentionally activate deep feelings of unworthiness, shame and failure within me. I can’t help it. I feel like I have to change to please you, transform myself just to take away your anxiety, mend myself to end your resistance to the way I am. And I know I can’t do that, not on your urgent timeline anyway. You put me in an impossible bind. I feel so powerless.

I know your intentions are loving! I know you really want to help. You want to serve. You want to take away people’s pain when you see it. You want to uplift, awaken, caretake, educate, inspire. You truly believe that you are a positive, compassionate, unselfish, nice, good, kind, pure, spiritual person.

But I want you to know, honestly, friend, I feel like a steaming pile of shit when you try to ‘love’ me in this old way. It doesn’t feel loving to me at all. Quite the opposite. It feels like you’re trying to relieve your own tension by controlling me. Under the guise of you being ‘kind’ and ‘helpful’ and ‘spiritual’, I feel suffocated, smothered, rejected, shamed, and completely unloved. I feel abandoned in your love! Do you get that? I feel like you don’t actually care about ME, even though on the surface it sure looks like you care! But deep down it feels like you are holding an image of how I should be. Your image. Not mine!

It looks like your love but it feels like your violence. Do you understand?

Yet as soon as you stop trying to ‘help’ me, you are of the greatest help to me! I stop trying to change to please you! I feel safe, respected, seen, honored for what I am. I can fall back into my own power. I can trust myself again, the way you are trusting me. I can relax deeply.

Without your pressure, your demand for me to abandon myself and be different, healed, transformed, enlightened, awakened, mended, ‘better’, I can better see myself. I can discover my own inner resources. I can touch my own powerful presence. I feel safe enough to allow and express my true feelings, thoughts, desires, hold my own perceptions. I no longer feel smothered, a victim, a little child to your expert adult. The courageous adult in me rises. I breathe more deeply. I feel my feet on the ground. Loving attention drenches my experience, even the uncomfortable parts. My senses feel less dull. Healing energies emerge from deep within. I feel light, free, liberated from your fear. I feel respected, not shamed. Seen, not compared to an image.

You help me so much when you stop trying to help me, friend! I need my own answers, my own truth, not yours. I want a friend, present and real, not an expert or a savior.

And do you see, when you are trying to save me, you are actually abandoning yourself? You are running from your own discomfort, your own unlived potential, and focussing on mine? I become your ultimate distraction. I don’t want to be that for you anymore.

Let’s break this cycle together! Let’s stop trying to fix or save each other. Let’s love each other instead. Bow to each other. Bless each other. Hold each other. As we are. As we actually, actually, actually are.

– Jeff Foster

Photo: Lisa Bonet

WILD WOMAN SISTERHOOD

Embody your Wild Nature

Read Full Post »

Another Caregivers Prayer

There are lots of these out there, and Heaven knows we need as many as we can find, every day!

This one was written by Carol J. Farran, DNSc, RN, and Eleanore Keane-Hagerty, MA, in 1989 and printed in The American Journal of Alzheimer”s Care and Related Disorders & Research.

12 Steps for Caregivers

Although I cannot control the disease process, I need to remember I can control many aspects of how it affects me and my relative. I need to:

  • Take care of myself so that I can continue doing the things that are most important.
  • Simplify my lifestyle so that my time and energy are available for things that are really important at this time.
  • Cultivate the gift of allowing others to help me, because caring for my relative is too big a job to be done by one person.
  • Take one day at a time rather than worry about what may or may not happen in the future.
  • Structure my day, because a consistent schedule makes life easier for me and my relative.
  • Have a sense of humor, because laughter helps to put things in a more positive perspective.
  • Remember that my relative is not being “difficult” on purpose, rather that his/her behavior and emotions are distorted by the illness.
  • Focus on and enjoy what my relative can still do rather than constantly lament over what is gone.
  • Increasingly depend upon other relationships for love and support.
  • Frequently remind myself that I am doing the best that I can at this very moment.
  • Draw upon the Higher Power, which I believe is available to me.
Reprinted from The American Journal of Alzheimer”s Care and Related Disorders & Research, November/December, 1989, 4(6), 38-41.

http://alzlive.com/spirit/well-being/the-caregivers-prayer/

Read Full Post »