Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. –Philippians 4:5
Happy Day After Easter, all! That chronological fact is what I would like to discuss briefly at the Cornbread table today…
The Day/Week/Month/Year after. The Day/Week/Month/Year after the bad diagnosis. The Day/Week/Month/Year after placement of a loved one in a nursing home. The Day/Week/Month/Year after losing a loved one to this disease. The day of these things is a bundle of emotions, but the Day/Week/Month/Year after is many times what gets missed. There are often lots of folks around in the heat of the moment…but a Day/Week/Month/Year passes and the numbers dwindle.
What brings this up isn’t so much current events in my world. I mean, things have been fairly stable here since winter when mom had her seizure. She is holding her own, and doing ok. The good: she is at peace, not in pain, and gets lots of rest. The bad: she sleeps 20-22 hours a day, gets sores that have to be addressed often (lest they cause a terminal infection) and wheezes more than she should have to because of aspirating food/drinks. The problem for this week is water-filled blisters on her forehead. It doesn’t appear to be staph or anything painful, but who knows? She can’t tell us in our 30 minutes a week and Hospice only comes a couple times a week. So we squeak like a Wal-Mart cart wheel and hope to get information… It is hard, but it is what we can do until restrictions are lifted… No, I bring up the Day/Week/Month/Year after because of something that bums me out on social media: giving up.
PLEASE know that I am not trying to judge harshly…not even a little bit…just an observation and a plea. Here is how it typically works: after 5 or 8 or 12 or a longer number of years, the loved one tragically dies. There is a lot of support the day and perhaps the week after for those in the family/community remaining, then we “move on” and inadvertently let the poor souls left fall through the cracks. The flipside also happens. A loved one passes away after a decade or more of caregiving and the remaining spouse/relative walks away and leaves social media groups/support groups and the like.
I certainly understand… as best I can, that is. However, we need you. I need you and the rest of the Digital Cornbread and Alzheimer’s caregiving community needs you. We need your wisdom…often a wisdom only acquired by “being there” and living through the unfolded events. Can I encourage you in a small way as someone who still has incomplete life experiences? Please take time off to mourn, then find your niche in the community and help others. It will help them dramatically and it just may help you understand, in a small way, why what happened, happened, as you make things better for others. It may take some time before you feel like it. No problem…take a season to mourn and exhale and focus on getting yourself back on track…but don’t give up. You are needed more than you will ever know. 🙂 Thank you very much! 🙂 Lots of love and respect.