Reflections on My Caregiving Journey; Three Years In…

This week marks the third anniversary of my mother’s health care journey due to serious cardiac issues.

And it marks the third anniversary of the beginning of my journey as a caregiver.

I had the privilege to share the beginnings of that journey this week as well the importance and dynamics of caregiving  with a group of young adults.

As I prepared for the presentation, I turned to a great resource site called caregiving.com that is run by a wonderful caregiving mentor, Denise Brown.

She has lots of great resources and support and I value her six stages of caregiving that I shared with the group. (And the #carechat Twitterchat twice month on Sunday nights that she facilitates has been a very helpful place to go for me.)

As I developed the presentation, I turned to an important tool of that time

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When I opened this small note pad, the emotions of that time period, from mid-April to late July, came flooding back into my conscious thought. I felt the fast pace, the long hours of waiting, the uncertainty of the next moment, and the celebration I noted on one page

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But now, three years later I am definitely in stage four, The Pragmatic Caregiver Stage, knowing that five and six,  the Transitioning Caregiver Stage and the Godspeed Caregiver Stage (respectively), can come at any time.

Since that journey three years distant, she has had a recurrence of breast cancer which has been successfully dealt with; had to deal with the effects of medicine that once regulated has helped her deal with all of her cardiac “additions;” and has fought to keep going at now nearly 92.

She has been a strong willed person throughout her life (my late father found that out as he pursued her for well over a year before she finally said “yes” to marriage!) and that, along with as she says, “the Lord and Mary Kay” has kept her going.

It has kept me going, too.

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