When all is said and done, a caregiver’s life is often something apart from the lives of the people who sit next to you on the bus, who work beside you, who you meet in the grocery store.
It is not that your life is more difficult, or that other people don’t have challenges of their own. It simply is that our burden is a composite, the sum total of the physical, emotional, spiritual, financial, familial stresses that are involved in taking care of a Loved One with Alzheimer’s disease.
It is a compound challenge, affecting almost every nook and cranny of our lives. One jagged arm of this multitentacle mess is reaching into your finances, while another is clutching at your heart, another is tearing your family asunder, while still more are wreaking havoc with your physical well being and your spiritual faith.
I honestly don’t know if there will ever be a point where clarity will rise from the ashes of this struggle and we will one day understand the meaning of what we have had to endure.
However, I do know that being happy is not about finding the answers to life.
Even for the most spiritual among us, life will always have an element of mystery and that shouldn’t frighten us, but intrigue and excite us.
When we can accept that, we can begin to relax into the circumstances of our life. We can even discover that, as we get older, the circumstances that used to confine us can begin to liberate us by reminding us how resilient we are. After all, despite the trials and tribulations of our lives, we are still here, aren’t we?
Caregiving provides us with an opportunity to embrace the challenges of life and awakens us to the very possibility that we are bigger and better than we had ever imagined.
Passion is seeing your life as a blank canvas while every instinct within you is compelling you, driving you to create something of value.
Because we are caregivers we get stronger, more durable and more capable. Yes, we are still fragile, but we are learning that our fragility is the door to our humanity through which we can feel more deeply the richness of life.
I don’t believe that we are really searching for answers to life’s questions at all. In fact, I don’t even think we would know what to do with them if we found them.
I believe what we are truly seeking is simply the experience of being alive.
People search for purpose and meaning in the mundane, which is why it is so easy to get lost in the never-ending quest for more.
True passion comes from waking out of passivity and creating our lives anew.
As caregivers, we are virtually thrown into the crucible to have our lives forged and hammered until we become better versions of ourselves. We are practically given a paint by the numbers kit: apply some empathy here, courage here, understanding here, courage there, until we have unveiled the masterpiece of our life.
Don’t we owe it to our Loved Ones and ourselves
to Live a Passionate Life!?
It is only when we lose ourselves in service that we can begin to find ourselves!
That is when we can awaken the sleeping giant within and become passionate
about our lives again.
The only way to do this is to create distinctions for your life that makes caregiving an opportunity for healing. To create a vision for your life that is so compelling and inspiring, you will do whatever is necessary to make it happen.
Imagine the quiet joy you feel when you witness your life becoming an inspiration to others?
You become an inspiration to your family and your community; not by what you say, but by the example you set as a caregiver.
There is little about caregiving that is easy. It certainly is not for the meek. The majority of caregivers have reserves that they are not even aware of until they are called upon. And it is during these moments, when a person learns to become humble and be obedient to the will of that something within him, and he is awakened.
Awakened to a life where one can give and love and serve, not out of limitation and lack, but out of abundance, as there is never a shortage of love.
Every single day, I wake up and within seconds I remember that I am living in the greatest challenge I have ever faced. And every single day, in that very moment, I am faced with a choice.
How can I
Do I succeed every day? Of course not!
But I can say with a true and peaceful heart, that caregiving has and continues to give me the opportunity to live a passionate, purposeful and meaningful life. And because of that, I experience being alive.