Patience and Kindness
Patience and kindness are elements that are needed for those who are ill and need our help, but it is also for our own selves. These things are easy to forget and we often feel selfish for even suggesting them. Have you ever gotten a blanket for someone who said they were cold, but forgot that you were cold too? Caretakers need to be in touch with their own needs too. If you don't you will find yourself resenting the person you are caring for and you will also stop loving parts of yourself.. be kind to YOU.
Being a caretaker for someone who is chronically ill can be daunting and lonely at times. No one living a so called 'normal' life can nor will ever possible understand the significance of it. There is a part of YOU that has been abandoned in order to 'be there' for another individual. There is a part of YOU lost and dare I say mostly lost to you so much that it is hard to identify your very own personality without the surname of caretaker to preface it.
Here is a bit of ranting that you as a caretaker will no doubt relate to:
I confess that I personally go back and forth with it all.. partly out of survival. I research, create diets, vitamin regiments, am the sounding ear, on and on. Then a part of me pulls back because I get overwhelmed. Yet a bit of times goes by and I somehow, because I love this person, resurface and begin it all again. In many ways I have stopped living because of it... and the person I am now does not even resemble who I used to think "me" was. So selfish at times, that is the way it feels. I know and I wish I could stay centered, but I am also an artist and oft times the dark side is too much combined with my husbands pain and loss of life essentially.
I guess I add my ranting because it needs to be understood by the victim as well as the caretaker. The fact that their pain is felt in ways that can't be explained sometimes and they, the victim, live in a world outside of ours as well. It all feels so lonely.
The guilt is tremendous as I close my eyes sometimes and try to imagine a normal life.
OK! So that is the ranting said and felt in weak moments, what to do with those feelings when you are alone in the dark late at night? Decide to make things a bit better!
I think there simply MUST be time for YOU. You cannot let things go about yourself no matter how easy that feels to slide into. TIME MUST be taken out to personally pamper yourself. Yes I said "pamper"! No that is not a bad word or concept. TIME must be given back to your lest you disappear. You know its true don't you? So, OK, right now at this very moment you need to start a list of things that feel like "pampering".
Here are a few ideas:
1) A nice bath with candles and some bath salts.
2) Do your toes! If you can't afford to have them done, do them yourself. Funny I know but when you look down on them you are going to feel a sense of being taken care of... by "you"!
3) Tell the person you are care taking that you need a "Pay it Forward" from them. This seems like an odd thing to do I know, but just a hand massage will do, something simple. They need to benefit by giving back to you as well.
4) Spend some time reading about something only you care about.
5) Learn something new! Think of something you have always wondered about and research it. If you don't know what that might be, get the book "How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci". It's all about curiosity and discovering who YOU are and what YOU think.
6) Meditate, even for five minutes, to connect with your inner being.
7) Pick flowers and set them around your house.
8) Go for walks.
9) Maybe get a dog to go with you on your walks. There is nothing more dear than the laughter brought on by a pet.
10) Do art. No pressure to do anything outrageous, just play!
YOU are not alone in your moods of ranting and it is OK to do so, because it is you saying back to yourself, "Hey, what about me?" It's OK to do that sometimes. It is OK to feel at times that you almost hate this person you are caring for and just want to run. Give yourself some slack. Know that you are not alone in your feelings. It's alright. We both know that within the next second, time can be refreshed. You take on the role of nursing for this person because you honestly do care. So be kind back to that nurse OK? OK!! You do it and I will too!
You are not alone.
THE IMAGE IS ONE OF MY PAINTINGS. IT IS CALLED "LOST AT SEA" and is 62x75 oil on canvas.
TURN ON SOME MUSIC as you enjoy my lens.
I Would Miss You...
Normally we do things for people close to us because we love them.. cradle that as you don't want to become bitter and lose that.
I Would Miss You - Even If We Had Never Met
I think I'd miss you
even if I'd never met you.
I think there would be a space missing from me.
When I am not with you now
I cannot think of much else
than what is lacking
a few missed breaths
a few sentiments to share with someone
someone in the same space.
When I am not with you
airplanes still fly overhead
What on earth can they be thinking?
Some would think me damaged
or at least insecure
oh so needy
without love notes in my pocket.
Yet, my stance
the very essence of my said creativity
is not quite centered
when you are not within reach.
What can I say?
What excuses do I have?
it is what it is
I am within that fairy tale
the one that little girls grew up dreaming about?
The ones with the white horse
the kiss that awakens...
keep your voice intact
poetry is never all that far
words that wind round dreams
You my love
are like the breeze
of the words I want to say
I am understood
I love you.
I think that I would miss you
even if we had never met.
I think I would feel incomplete
never being able to figure out what was missing.
for a song
that would never find its way to sound.
Like a rose in a vase without baby's breath
a flower in a vase
left to dry out.
Or maybe I'd just stay inside the garden
and no one would come to pick me
that I would miss you
"even if we had never met."
by Kathy Ostman-Magnusen
ABOUT Kathy Ostman-Magnusen: I am an artist, represented by Monkdogz Urban Art, New York. ORIGINAL ART may be purchased through Monkdogz: http://www.monkdogz.com/chelseagallery/artistart/M...
FREE ART GIFTS,suitable for children plus prints, giclees, cards, available on my website: http://www.kathysart.com
THE IMAGE IS OF MY PAINTING "ORCHIDS" 36X48 OIL ON CANVAS
HOW ABOUT A FEW EASY POLLS?
Poll 1 of 3
THE IMAGE IS OF ONE OF MY PAINTINGS, "Bromeliad" 18x24 oil on canvas
Have you ever cared for someone ill for an extensive time?
Poll 2 of 3
IMAGE IS OF MY PAINTING "The Dancer" 36x48 oil on canvas
Has anyone had to care for YOU when ill?
Poll 3 of 3
IMAGE IS OF MY PAINTING "Mermaid Baby" 20x24 oil on canvas
Do you worry that there will be no one to take care of you if you ever need it?
More Elisa "DANCING" Don't forget to DANCE
You NEED to DANCE.. your heart and being must maintain flight and hope and caring for who you are too.. DANCE!!
People form things from their hands.. it starts with their hands.
The Most Important Thing
LOVE.. love YOU, and love those around you.
A THUMBS UP IS SOOO APPRECIATED TOO!!