Posted in Caregiving

We’re All On an Odyssey

Welcome to Caregiver Friday!!

Over the past few months I’ve been spending time reading and studying about Odysseus, the story of “The Odyssey”.  If you haven’t explored it, it’s a wonderful story and so applicable to life today which to many would be a surprise.  The lessons are explored by many authors who take their turns exploring the meaning behind the story and how it applies to their particular discipline.

Tonight I finished Norman Fischer’s book, Sailing Home, a Buddhist perspective of The Odyssey.  I found the book to beautifully written and the meditations were good ways to understand the work on a deeper level.  At the end of the book Fischer talks about the point in our lives when we “come home”.  For many facing a health challenge you may be thinking this is the point of death, but he takes it much deeper because his perspective is that there is no such thing as death, only life in the moment.

The part that caught my attention and that I want to share with you is a story he tells about a friend who is a hospice social worker.  The hospice worker asked Fischer, “How do you prepare for death?”  He finally answered the following, “So hospice work is about living, appreciating living, at life’s most crucial and poignant moments.”  Can you think of anything more eloquent? 

Caregiving is about sharing those tough moments at “life’s most crucial and poignant moments”.  It’s the ability to share a moment with someone when you are both at your most vulnerable.  There’s an intimacy that develops even deeper than any physical intimacy you could imagine.  As a caregiver, to develop the capacity to be completely naked emotionally and spiritually is an amazing journey.  It’s a gift that provides you and the person you’re caring for hope in love, togetherness, and compassion.

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