Being a caregiver to someone who is ill or dying and all that it entails is something that we rarely discuss, but for those of us going through it or coming out of it, it takes a terrible toll on our own health and well-being.
I was following my own goals and dreams when my father became ill.
The path that I had been on suddenly stopped, and everything became secondary to ensuring that my father was OK. With each visit and every appointment, the news and his condition were worsening. And then there was nothing to be done but to take him home and keep him as comfortable as possible.
Over the months that followed, I stayed with my father all day or overnight, whichever was needed most. The appointments continued, as did his deteriorating condition, so what he needed was more and more of me, for everything from company, to cleaning, to cooking when he could still eat. My life as I knew it felt as though it was over, and I had to set everything that I was doing aside because someone relied on me to help get them through that day.
When he passed, it was a blur. And then it was cleaning his apartment, going through his stuff. There was no time for me anywhere. I realized that I just could not keep doing this, and that I had to take care of myself somewhere in all of this, or I would not be able to do what needed to be done, or even get back to some form of everyday life. I stepped back and took a good look: I was experiencing classic signs of grief, and I needed to give myself some help.
Because of my profession, I had a good idea what to look for, and saw the signs for myself. I needed rest; I needed to allow myself to feel this immense grief. I would be OK and then something would trigger thoughts of my Dad, and my emotions and sadness would be right in front of me. I had to realize that there were triggers, things that brought my sadness to the forefront each and every day.
Once I started recognizing them, I was able to better manage them, and when I needed to cry, I made no excuses. I ate to feel better, and not what I would recommend eating, either. But I had my supplement and nutrition knowledge to get me through, and what a difference it made for me. The right dosage and consistent use meant that I could still make it through the day, even when I thought I might fall apart.
You are not alone in your needs as a caregiver, or in your time of grief.
Know you’re not alone. Know that there are ways to take care of yourself in all of this, and that there are people out there who can help you get back on track. Care for the caregiver and the grieving is essential. Let me help you get back on track.
I invite you to join me for a caring conversation. Book a complimentary 30 minute discovery call. We'll get to the heart of where I can help provide you with support and guidance.
To your continued health,