Climbing out of our shell (literally)...

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We get so locked into our situation as caregiver that we forget what life used to be like. Unknowingly, our 'outside' world begins to take on different 'normals' and little-by-little shrink the very exsistance that makes up our life... Most times, we caregiver's dont have support or, even worse, have family/friend opposition. All this effects our health and happiness, so what must we do to gain our 'self' back?... By finally cracking (knocking down the mentally blocked walls around us) we retrain our 'self' to climb out and go forward... (even forcefully, if we have to). We are no different than any human being seeking happiness... So, we have a choice... I'm starting to relearn my steps... finding new friends, doing things I normally wouldn't do... It's a start... Come along with me on this continued journey... Let's move forward... What are your thoughts?


I agree. If you go down, it's worse for the cared for one. Also, telling the truth,the whole truth and nothing but, about the situation to medical professionals helps. Our demented mother has always been into keeping things secret, keeping up appearances, but this doesn't work in the long run. As soon as we started sharing more, outing the secrets, we felt a lot better, instead of all the coverups and ommissions.
At first I was afraid to do my own things. Suppose Mom walks away in my absence? The guilt is bad enough, but her mental agony of not knowing how to get back home. I still venture out. It is risky. Yesterday my brother passed by just in time. Mom was getting dressed to go out. She did not know where, but she was going. He took her with him. I have to go out today again. I can only ask her to come along. (She is not talking to me.) If not, I pray God will convince her not to stray. My yard is a weed jungle. Every week I have to be at it. This is a good workout, my mind is refreshed.
H2H, I hear you, I have just a few friends on the outside I speak with on the phone, however it's gotten to where it's not enough. I need sane human contact, fun, some adventure dare I say! I miss me, my life, my hopes, dreams, it's hard crawling on your belly all the time, I'm so scraped up, but I too don't really know where to start. Can't really retrace my steps, I live in a semi small town. I don't want to run into people I once worked with I want to move on, but I can't till I finish dealing with my two parents yes I'm whining. It was the call from the sister I'm still reeling from. But you're on the right path you have to get a diversion from it all being about your elder and find your balance, me too! I like where you're going with your thoughts. Will any of your siblings take your mom for a weekend so you can go out with friends?
@ heart to heart,
im reading from you that we have to get ourselves some perspective and steer ourselves towards our own well being. even if you understand the stressors and form a plan, i think its still a journey that will take some time . when the caregiving has ended therell be the added factors of loss / grief , radical life change .
you have a great attitude, thats a start i s'pose.
Yes, captain... It definitely is an ever-changing world for the care giver (before and after)... very radical ups and downs and I think we 'really' have to try and be as positive as possible to move forward, because inside we know this is the only logical way up. I know it's as hard as hell... But, in all honestly, from everything I've gathered through the last 10 years (like you.. with counselors, books, other caregivers), I think it's the only way out... I think we 'owe' it to ourselves to fight as hard as we can when 'it' (depression/guilt...) trys to pull us down... I guess the bottom line is that our loved ones would want us to be happy and go on with our lives. So, we shouldn't inflict more than we should on ourselves... I know it's not easy... but, maybe we can beat 'it' (literally 'beat it')... Perhaps we not only owe it to ourselves but in 'honor' of our loved ones...

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