I know it’s just water and light…but to me it has always been more…
When people are caring for their dying loved ones, painfully aware of the finality of life and the enemy of time, they often feel compelled to spend every waking moment caring for their loved ones…sometimes to their own detriment. Working in hospice, I too embrace this awareness, and I find myself feeling guilty for longing for time away from my children. I try to make every free moment theirs because I don’t want to miss a beat of their lives. But without taking the time to rest (which is not the same as sleeping) and recharge, exhaustion sets in and the quality of those moments diminishes. I tell my patients’ families all the time that there is no shame in needing, wanting, or taking a break from being a caregiver. In fact, taking time away can help you be a better
caregiver. By not running on empty, you actually have more to give. I can accept that I definitely NEED some time away from my children (and some time WITH my husband). The challenge comes with the HOW of making that happen. I need respite…like YESTERDAY! I should not have waited this long…but it took me this long to see it.
As I was dictating all of this into my phone, I noticed a rainbow in the sky. It escorted me almost the whole way to work. And I felt something I hadn’t felt in a while: HOPE. I am not alone…and this too shall pass. I just hope it passes before I do.