Posted in Caregiving

We All Suffer

Welcome to Caregiver Friday!!

I’m doing a lot of research about the impact that a diagnosis of a chronic or life-threatening illness has on each of us.  It’s not only the person with the diagnosis that’s impacted, but the family (caregiver), friends, work colleagues, etc.  As a caregiver you experience suffering just as the person with the diagnosis suffers.  The outward reason for the suffering may not be the same, you’re not the one directly battling the physical impact of the disease, but you are facing it on the emotional, spiritual, and financial fronts.

The biggest thing for many about suffering is that it’s rooted in separation and isolation.  Suffering often rears its head when you begin to go inward and due to responsibilities as a caregiver begin to withdraw from life as you knew it.  We’ve talked about how a caregiver is like an air traffic controller, trying to coordinate all the activities to care for the patient.  When is there time for connection?  How do you, the caregiver. stay connected.  Connection is probably better than most of the antidepressants on the market (taking the neurochemical imbalance out of the picture).  Connection validates our lives and provides the support when times get rough.

One of the things to consider when you experience suffering is, “What am I actually missing, longing for, or desiring?”  Isolation and separation keep our minds running on overdrive in a circular fashion.  It’s like being on a treadmill unable to get off.  When this happens, you go fast, but you don’t get anywhere.  This effort is unrewarded adding to the despair.

What will you do today to end your suffering?  You can’t eliminate the physical experience of the diagnosis for the patient, but you’ve been doing all along makes them know they are loved and important to you.  How do you know you’re loved and important?  How can you plug back into your life?  I hope you find a way to eliminate the isolaotin and separation.  Feel free to connect to me…write a comment below or email me at greg@survivingstrong.com

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