Saturday, September 4, 2010

In honor of...

I'm writing this in honor of my dad, who passed away five years ago today. I attended my father's passing along with my mom, husband, and daughter. Daddy didn't seem to know we were there, but we kept talking to him and holding his hands, and telling him we loved him. We all believe he could hear us and knew we were right there with him. We encouraged him to let go, so he could go on Home and not be ravaged by dementia anymore. We're still remembering you with joy, Daddy, and we love you always. We're teaching your great-granddaughter about you now. When she sees your picture, she knows you're "Papa" even though she's only three. She'll love the funny and sweet stories about you that we'll tell her as she gets older. You were a sport model and we miss you every day, but not the way you were at the end. We know you are healed now, and for that we are all content that your journey is over. Mama is doing really well, though she misses you always. If I could talk to you a moment, I'd tell you that I'm doing my best to make sure Mama is safe and happy. I look forward to seeing your smile again one day.

Carol Bradley Bursack wrote a new article about attending her uncle's passing, and about how caregivers are human. Again, her writing blessed and encouraged me as I remembered Daddy's passing, and I was grateful to read it. And while I hated to have Daddy go, I was thankful that his final, terrible struggle was over.

I also agree with Carol that as caregivers, we are often tired, and we don't have enough time for all the balls in the air that have to be juggled on top of caregiving issues, like our own paid jobs, children, spouses, our own health, etc. These are truly the core of the matter. I find that I have to make time for my husband and me to have some "us" time, now that Mama lives with us. Sounds kinda funny, but our almost-retirement years are very full, and sometimes a little overwhelming...but when a loved-one's health takes a turn for the worse, as in Daddy's case six years ago, it's easy to be overwhelmed, and not just a little.

Caregiving requires prioritizing and juggling like nothing I've ever done before, so I appreciate Carol's article. Thank you for helping us consider this and make our individual plans.

Many thanks to all of you who write and share your caregiving experiences and suggestions for others who walk in the same path with you. I am grateful for you all.

Caregiver at Home

If you'd like to read Carol's latest article, click here:
Carol's Article

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