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Showing posts from March, 2020

Uncertain Times

On one hand, many caregiver's lives have not changed much over the last couple of weeks. We are used to being locked in. Caregivers often suffer from social isolation because we don't have much of a social life anyway, if any at all. Personally, I didn't anticipate having any problems with stay-at-home orders as they were broadcast. But the climate change surprised me. Most of us as caregivers are used to advocating for our loved ones. But this feels different. It's more intentional, more constant, more personal. And it could have dire ramifications if we let up for just one second - or at least it feels that way to me. When times seem to be even more trying and each day is uncertain - never knowing what news will unfold - I have to go back. When my son was first injured and my caregiving journey was beginning even though I wasn't aware of it at that point, I started grabbing for sanity. In that moment, I had to go back, back to what I knew. I found much of wh

Adjust the Focus

Yesterday was a rather rough day. We are pretty much quarantined in light of the recent developments surrounding the Coronavirus. We’ll avoid crowds and the only place we might go would be the trails where there is not much chance of exposure. This meant that yesterday when I went to see my mom in a healthcare facility, I was turned away. It was so surreal, like something out of a movie. I totally understand, but it still stung for it to become so real. It was also Chris’s 36 th birthday and I take his birthdays hard. He got one phone call and one card. How can he just be forgotten? He’s still here. It’s just an emotionally rough day. Add to that the declaring of a state of emergency across the country and it was just a heavy day. I didn’t even realize how bundled up my emotions were. Then, late last night Nicole C. Mullen popped up on Periscope. She was supposed to be traveling to a scheduled meeting, but it was canceled in light of the Coronavirus. She just started singi

He Won’t Forget

My mom has a form of dementia. Right now, she does remember us, but she doesn’t remember life events. Many caregivers I meet are caring for parents with Alzheimer’s or dementia of some kind. It’s so hard on the emotions and heart because they still look like mom and dad, but they are not fully there. My mom has no memories of the ministry we did together for all those years. We traveled some and she’d speak at women’s meetings and I’d usually take my guitar and do some music. One year, we planned a whole women’s retreat. Our good friend Johnnie H. came and spoke, and I did all the music with our friend Linda P. Such good memories – but she doesn’t recall them at all. Of course, my mom isn’t the one “suffering” so to speak. She’s chipper, friendly, and still loves everyone. She just doesn’t remember her life and all the people she impacted through her years of serving as a nurse and a minister. It’s sad for us – but she seems fine with it. She’s not troubled over it – becaus

The Corona Virus and Faith

No matter what you believe about the Corona Virus and the “pandemic” declared by WHO, it’s a concerning situation. While the virus itself doesn’t pose much threat to the general public, and recovery is expected, to those most vulnerable among us, it can be fatal. That puts a bit of stress on us as caregivers as we strive to take the necessary precautions to try and shield those we care for from exposure. Where do we run in times like these? As a caregiver fear knocks at my heart’s door. I want to batten down the hatches, spray everyone with disinfectants and move further back in the caregiver’s cave. The social isolation of being quarantined isn’t scary – many of us have been living like that for years. I discussed this in another blog I maintain by stating, Welcome to My World . We hold on to faith every day as caregivers. It takes faith most days for us to continue living and moving forward. But add something like this crazy virus on top and we have to dig down just a l

In His Hands

This morning, I was working on my latest devotional 31 Days in Psalm 31  which I hope to complete and have in my bookstore by the end of the month. There are so many things in this one psalm and I've read it so much my Bible falls open to it automatically now. lol. I was thinking about fear, grief, hurt, and the dark night of the soul. Caregiving can be an emotional roller coaster. Sure, there are those caregiver moments like when my son actually hugged me the other evening. Those moments erase a ton of pain. They make it all worth it. But they are not lasting and it's back to the day-to-day grind. As I was working on the devotional, I took a look at Job again. His story intrigues me. He took all the overwhelming pain and turned it into worship. It wasn't about a congregational song on Sunday morning, he wasn't sitting out back playing his guitar, and no Kumbaya around the campfire either. He took his deepest grief and pain and he worshipped.   Like David in Psalm

Into the Wlderness

This morning during my private reading and journaling time, I was reading along and just minding my own business. Little things were standing out to me like the fact God had to tell Moses that all the curtains were to use the same measurement. I just found it funny and understood why God didn't have me build it. I'd have one short panel, and none of them would be exactly the same length. lol. It was sort of fun reading all those little particulars as some of it should have been common sense. But God was specific, for sure. But when I got down to chapter 29, verse 46, I stopped. This verse tells us the why  behind God bringing them out of Egypt. It says He brought them out - so He could dwell among them. The whole thing was so He could walk with them. I was humbled that He sent Moses after His people just so He could be with them. His heart is always about pursuing intimacy with His people, isn't it? My "wow" didn't last long, though. I thought the fact t

Small Reminders

Today has not gotten off to a great start, and it’s not even caregiving that’s the problem. Sometimes I have wished that when we became caregivers all the rest of life’s “stuff” would just take a break. But, of course, that’s not the case. We must juggle caregiving responsibilities will all the norms of life too. This morning I was trying to sort out my insurance stuff. I tried two or three things on the site, and then it came up and said I was denied, even though I supposedly had two more days to send in the next 900 forms they were requesting. Evidently, my tax forms are not enough. I’m not even sure at this point what it is they are wanting. So I called the helpline (twice) only to be sent off into some three ring circus of press this for that – chasing answers that never came. Finally, I got to push the button for a person. Expecting to be put on hold, I was instead told, “We are sorry you are having difficulty. Please call back later.” And it disconnected. Not to be ou

Juggling Acts

The last weekend in February has been a fun one for the last seven years. It’s usually the weekend of my daughter’s birthday but sometimes falls the weekend after her actual birthday. We have ridden the train to Fort Worth and participated in some way in the Cowtown races. This year, we did the 10K together on Saturday. The rest of the weekend is ours to enjoy. This year, we just relaxed other than the expo for the event and the 10K we finished early on Saturday. Giving her this one weekend a month where it’s just mother-daughter, is not really enough to make up for giving all my time to her brother, Chris, whom I care for 24/7. It doesn’t really give her back the time she’s lost these last 11 years. But it’s a special time for her and for me – we spend it together just being us. It’s always loads of fun and she calls all the shots as to where we eat and what we do. This year, planning did not go off without a hitch. We get some respite through the Advantage program (if you