Is it possible that the promise of a cup of coffee can get you through the day? For me, it did and sometimes still does. When you are in the throes of overwhelming caregiving, it is the anticipation of the small moments that keep you moving.
At one point in time, I was caring for my mother, mother-in-law and two small children each with their own permutations of illnesses and need. I could imagine that cup of coffee warm in my hand while sitting in a comfy chair with a ray of sunshine in the winter or my porch swing in the spring. There would be quiet and, more importantly, stillness for 5 to 10 minutes. That was in the days of overwhelming, mind-numbing, life-altering caregiving.
Life is full of phases though and now I’m onto the stage of chronic caregiving that involves children and my mother's constantly evolving illnesses. This phase of caregiving is more chronic and echoes what most folks deal with daily because the reality is, we’re all caregivers in some form.
Now, rather than a 5-minute cup of coffee and stillness, I find that same sense of peace differently. It is interwoven into the busyness of my life when I take an hour once a week to go to the farmers market and plan a healthy meal that will feed everyone and leave leftovers to freeze for my mom. Finding ways to make my life better by doing a meditation class and connecting afterward with friends who understand my need to take a break. The reality is that we’re all caregivers in a variety of ways whether it’s friends, parents, children or spouses. It’s finding the little and sometimes bigger ways to feed our souls whether it’s for 5 minutes or hopefully longer!
Guest Blogger and Perpetual Caregiver