Thursday, May 27, 2010

Dog Day...or Cat Day...Exhaustion



This is a the cover of my 2009-2010 Datebook...I covered it because it had something on it I didn't like. I'm about to start the 2010-2011 book, so this one will go. The photo is our third oldest grandson, Tim.

Yesterday in Fort Worth was a very good day...we went to WoodCraft to get wood for a sign for the house which will say Oak Cottage. We went to JoAnn's to get fabric for me to make a purse. We went to Kings to get sherry for Raf. We ate lunch at La Madeleine's, (had a wonderful French vanilla torte with fresh berries). We went to Asel Art to get framing materials for Raf and blending pencils for me. We went to Barnes and Noble to get books. We went to Central Market to get GOOD food!

...but by the end of the day my right knee and calf was aching so bad I had to take a muscle relaxer and ice it before going to bed early...for me! I even used to between the knees pillow I got when my hip was bad! And today...yuck!

I have been out and watered the garden and fed the birds...and I did wash a load of clothes, but I didn't eve fix breakfast this morning! We just ate juice and toast. I usually make eggs and bacon or crepes or biscuits or pancakes or something. Anyway. . .

Enough about me. I have had word today of two different friends with health problems...and two others yesterday. Please pray for them.

I did make a poster for Bethy's softball team. Raf and I are each making something for their auction to benefit their Florida trip to the World Series, and they needed a brochure to tell about it. I will make a piece of jewelry, and Raf will frame one of his photos. Hopefully it will bring in about $150.

Finished a Marion Babson book called, Paws for Alarm...a cosy that was very entertaining, and as usual, had a cat in it!


My friend Donna Childree Gotlib wrote this on FaceBook. I would like to share it with you...to help her send this message:

Occasionally I participate in The One Minute Writer. Today's writing prompt can be found at http://oneminutewriter.blogspot.com/2010/05/todays-writing-prompt-reversal.html. The topic is "reversal". I immediately knew what I wanted to say, however there was no way to say it ...in sixty seconds. I've decided to share my thoughts here instead.

I'm proud of my Mother, Elizabeth. She lived her life through example.

My Mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's or Dementia in her mid seventies. In the beginning, with the knowledge that she was losing herself daily, she asked that I look out for her best interest. She called her attorney and we made arrangements. We went before the judge together and at Mother's request, I became her guardian and conservator. Over lunch at Weber's, her favorite restaurant, Mother explained to me that when making choices or decisions regarding her it was paramount for me to consider her feelings at all times. She said that I should always look and think about how she would have done something or what she would have wanted prior to her illness. Yes, I was stressed and suffering with her. She was a great Mother and a wonderful friend. It was difficult to watch her leaving us day by day, however I understood that my daily concern and responsibility was guarding her dignity and keeping her safe. There were wonderful moments along with the painful changes. Together, we celebrated life in the best ways that we could though activities, hugs, sharing stories, and sometimes just sitting silently side by side. I was blessed to be with her. In the confusion of the times we were blessed to share a different type of life with happy moments and a great amount of love.

It pains me to see caregivers who, perhaps due to stress, fatigue or maybe even anger, share personal stories through social media (not an inner circle of family or friends). I'm talking about stories that are not only demeaning, but also humiliting to those who cannot speak out to defend or protect themselves. Why not choose stories of love and kindness instead of stories that the individual might find upsetting and/or embarrassing? These stories are going out to a vast group of acquaintences, all of whom are free to pass them on at will. Why not celebrate your loved one and share with us stories that he or she would be pround to have passed around the Internet? Share things that this person would want to say if he or she was the one writing the post the world is able to access.

My heart breaks for those who have lost or are losing themselves daily to this illness. I wish that I could protect them all. I understand firsthand how a caretaker suffers, however, caretakers are in a different situation than those with the disease. Their minds are with them at night when they go to sleep and throughout the day as they go through their routine. Caretakers have options available. They make choices daily. They can choose to seek psychological help and emotional support. These are options that respect everyone.

We need to consider what we are doing with social media. I would like to see the abusive behavior reversed immediately, and replaced with stories that celebrate and lift up our friends and loved ones. I would also like to see those who encourage this type of behavior to stop and realize they are laughing at the expense of someone who is unable to defend themselves. Jokes are funny but these are stories about real people who might find these things embarrassing if they knew what was being said about them. They are still here and if they are in your care, they deserve your respect. There are other ways to support care givers who are feeling stressed or angry.

My wish is that everyone caring for a friend or loved one with Alzheimers/Dementia would remember that a human being is residing in that body. Humor is important and helps us deal with suffering, however, when the humor is at the expense of the very person who needs protection, something is seriously wrong. In my mind that is abuse. If you are unable to honor and respect the dignity of the person who is depending on you, perhaps you have hit the wall and need to seek other options.

I'm proud of my Mother for being such a strong woman. I am thankful for her example and strive to live the way that I was taught.



So...ladies and gentlemen, how has your day been. Let me hear from you!!!

3 comments:

D Gotlib said...

Sioux, Thank you for the reprint. As you know, this is something that I feel strongly about.
Hugs,
Donna

Annie said...

You had a great day. If you had dropped bread crumbs, I would have happily followed you everywhere. Now - tomorrow - REST.

Dawn said...

Sounds like a very busy day, followed by a day of much needed rest!

The white tulips - they have been so beautiful. Last year I got a bunch of bulbs and gave them to DC for his birthday - didn't think they were going to show up this year, but they did - in glorious profusion. So many colors. I hope they don't default back to yellow and red, which so many of our tulips have done.

I will be sharing the new iris pix as they show their beautiful faces.

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