This quote from Lewis Howes is today's social media post. A big part of caregiving is about letting go. Letting go of expectations, assumptions, plans. Accepting that you are right where you need to be in this moment is challenging. The illness of a family member, spouse or friend is rarely expected and it can feel like the most unwelcome intruder into our well-planned lives.
Accepting the illness is to stop denying the illness. But denial can be such a cozy coping mechanism. It allows one to float in the space of non-reality within the past, the past of life pre-diagnosis.
The struggle to accept your role as caregiver takes some time. Give yourself the gift of that time. So many adjustments need to be made, internally and externally. I would find myself frequently singing the line from the Talking Heads song, Once In A Lifetime:
"And you may ask yourself
Well...How did I get here?"
Certainly, this life was not really happening, was it? I was on one track with my life when, seemingly overnight, I jumped to another track going in a very different direction. What I wish I could have understood at the time was that this new direction would forever alter the destination of my life. If you believe in the stories of others who have traveled before you, then I ask you to believe me when I echo Howes' message. There will be pain and there will be beauty. In letting go of my planned life my future moved in via a present I did not particularly want. Of course, I had NO IDEA this was happening at the time.
Caregiving is not for the faint of heart. The universe knows your heart can sustain this trek through pain and beauty, what I referred to as the Land of Gloomy Beauty (more on that in an upcoming post).
Is there something that you may be holding onto that is keeping you from fully being present in your life and your caree's life? Is there a way to trust that you are right where you need to be in this moment, to trust in your life?