Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Telling the Truth Tuesday - It's hard

Everyone is telling me how wonderful it is that we've taken hubby's mom into our home. That I'm compassionate and nurturing and good at this. Maybe that's true. I don't think about that. It just seemed like it was the only acceptable choice and now that we've made that decision, it's okay.

What's hard is the emotional aspect. While the aides are here, it's not so bad. But when I'm alone in the house, I find myself checking on her to see if she's still breathing. At night, I'm able to go to sleep, but the instant I open my eyes, I dread getting up and going into her room, afraid of what I might find. I found my own mom dead in her bed, quite unexpectedly. That image stayed with me for a long, long time.

It's hard not making assumptions about what the good days might mean, or the bad ones. It's hard knowing that one day, probably not that far away, the good and bad days will disappear, and so will mom.

It's hard dealing with other people and their issues, whether or not their intentions are well-meaning or not. People just don't stop and think about the impact of their words or how their tone of voice makes someone feel.

Fitting my life in between the caregiving is hard, as well. But I'm managing. It is what it is and it's hard. And I'm okay with that. Just thought you should know...



Cyndi said...

Caregiving IS hard and the memory of your own mother's death and you finding her is huge. It would scare me every morning and I've not even had that experience. I'm sorry to hear that some people have been insensitive during this tough time.

Tamika: said...

You could never be more right- caregiving is HARD! I love that you share this with us so opnely. I have a feeling many of us will need this transparency one day.

God bless you!

Elspeth Antonelli said...

How could it not be hard? You're not a robot. This is why I have such admiration for you, Karen, you're undertook this task knowing it would be hard.

The Old Silly said...

Honesty is good for the soul. What your are doing is not easy and it is quite natural to have misgivings and feel deeply uncomfortable about it. That you still do it is to your credit. It is also excellent karma.

Marvin D Wilson

Helen Ginger said...

Most of us, looking in from the outside, think, what you're doing is so difficult, thank goodness it's not me. There are benefits, though often we don't see them until we're no longer in the tough situation. Time. This is a gift of time with her that you have. Memories, that you'll have forever. Peace at knowing you did all you could do. The joy of each day. Inner strength that comes from doing what before you could not have imagined doing.

Straight From Hel

Patricia Stoltey said...

Looking back, I see each of my caregiving experiences as blessings. At the time I was living through them, however, I often thought I would die of exhaustion and sadness. You must remember to always take care of yourself first.

Sharon Lippincott said...

I hear steely strength in your words. Steely strength supporting a tender spirit.

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

What an incredibly difficult task you're charged with! It's a special one, too--loving someone as they're passing to the next life. But...so difficult. And exhausting. I've done it before in spurts--but my mom took on the bulk of the responsibility with my grandmothers. And she was so tired, but also strangely peaceful, too.