In Praise of the Caregiver!

“Caregiving often calls us to lean into love we didn't know possible.” 
― Tia Walker

Today I will give praise and honor to the caregivers in our lives.  What would we do without them?  They give so much of themselves each and every day.   Whether you are in need of a full time caregiver, part time, or just a helping hand from time to time, caregivers play a huge roll in a disabled persons life.  Many times the caregiver in our life is exhausted, frustrated, and overwhelmed, but that doesn't stop them from caring for us.  They trudge forward and do tasks that make our lives better.

At this stage of my illness I am pretty much independent.  I still drive, cook and clean and do just about anything else, always with safety in mind.  Even though I still have a great deal of independence I still need help from time to time.  When I do my family takes on the roll of caregivers. Their support, love, and physical help is greatly appreciated.  I know that there is a possibility that as the years go by I may need a higher level of caregiving, but I know they will always be by my side. How blessed am I ?

Many people have paid caregivers.  They are equally important!  Just because they're paid for the gig doesn't change the fact that they have a difficult job.  

So let's give our caregivers, whomever they may be, a big thank you! I bet you'll make their day.

Do you have a special caregiver? 

A Different Me!

In life we are in a constant state of change, not just physical changes but emotional changes as well, and let's not forget the soul. 

Dystonic muscles were not always a part of my life.  I could walk, jump, run and scamper with the best of them.  Little hints of what to come were there but not recognized as a future nemesis.   For the most part the body gave what it was supposed to, and I accepted the rewards without question.  I made it through the teen years, worked, and had lots of fun in between.  Next came the married with kids years, where I am very thankful that I was able to raise me kids without my mobility disorder plaguing me.  

Once it was confirmed that there was a neuromuscular problem, something in me changed.   My persona became different and at times unrecognizable.  In the early years I was outgoing by nature, never meeting a stranger, and in truth I probably scared many away with my constant chatter.  I lived life out in the open, always ready for some fun.  However, when my symptoms began my personality began to change as well.  With each stumble and fall, a small fraction of me changed with my confidence level starting to wane.  I became aware of crowds,  and I felt embarrassed to walk in front of them.   The first time that happened I was totally shocked.  I was a person who in her former life could talk to a crowd of a thousand people without any problem.  With each phase of my disease I changed a little more.  I used to love to go to Starbucks and get a treat, but when I'm in between Botox shots for my voice I shy away.  My husband tells me to just drive up and tell them what I want, but that's easier said than done.  I am now shy, and I worry what others will think.  I know I shouldn't, but I do!

With my mind and body changing another part has changed as well, my soul.  My soul is who I am, good or bad.  The inner me now looks at life a bit differently.  I treasure every moment of this beautiful world, and I thank God for letting me live in the time of medical miracles.  No longer do I worry and stress about the small stuff.  I am more empathetic towards people and less judgmental.  I am in no way thankful for my disease!  I would much rather be healthy, but my disease has forever changed me; mind, body, and soul.

How have you been changed?