April 10 – Staying Calm

by Doris Jean Shaw

I have no Sunday to hang my week on; sometimes I lose track of what day it is. When my husband could no longer sit through a church service, we no longer attended. At the present, my one concession is to get up a few minutes early, drink my coffee in a room that starts out dark and is illuminated by the rising sun. I need that time to myself and to prepare for the day.

No longer is my time my own, as his health diminishes, my husband depends on me more and more to help with every day tasks. By ten o’clock, breakfast and bath are behind us. Any doctor’s appointments are scheduled for mornings, as by afternoon he is worn out and struggles to get out of a chair. Preparing lunch and seeing that he gets up and walks a bit drains me as well. The hardest part is to remain calm while he grows agitated. No longer can he dress without help. Eating is a challenge as his hands shake and food falls off the spoon. His foot does not want to move. Just getting through the ordeal of daily living leaves us both ready for a nap to rejuvenate. Between treatments for various ailments and his frequent trips to the bathroom, I am once again exhausted after supper and preparations for bed are complete.

Sleep eludes me as I wrestle with what I have to do, and the negative responses I get from those who have nothing but unsolicited advice. Thankful I am not in charge of the future, I get down on my knees and thank God for helping me through the day, and pray that tomorrow will be a repeat of today for I am not ready for the alternative.

Doris Jean Shaw is a retired educator, Life Coach, author and member of Beauregard Parish Writers Guild “The Ink Blots.” She loves to travel and writes romances, children’s stories and devotionals. Mrs. Shaw presents workshops, entitled “Reclaiming Me”, “My Parents Keeper”, “The Trouble with Retirement”, and “Care for the Caregiver” to help women find direction for their futures.

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3 responses to “April 10 – Staying Calm

  1. Oh Doris what a powerful and poignant post this is. Your strength, in the face of a challenge you would never have wanted, shines through.

  2. Doris……I resonated with every word, as I experienced the same exhausting caregiving of my now deceased husband for years. Also working two very LONG days at the same time. I would love to read your book about retirement as that is now a major current challenge for me and yet definitely knowing that it was time. I am re-married to a high school heartthrob and that should be enough to keep me out of the doldrums, but my son also died just months before my husband died……..My recovery is sporadic. Yes, I understand all the advice about caring for self, but how does one do that in the midst of someone needing constant care. Is he at a point that hospice could give you some respite?

  3. Pingback: One Lovely Blog Award | Rainy Day Reflections

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