The Recovering Care Giver

Here you are…Your partner has either moved on, moved out or has been healed and can function again without the care giving help.

In all 3 of those scenarios, it’s you who has done the heavy lifting, carried the burdens of both of your worlds, done things you never thought you would do in caring for your partner and now you are on the other side. 

Ask yourself.. What is your favorite color? Favorite flower? Who are my people? How do I look?What do I do with my time? Start a business? Travel? Take care of myself? A lot of unknowns.

It’s almost like you don’t know yourself anymore. You have put yourself aside or on a shelf in a box, like I did, thinking I will take care of you another day, but right now it is all about my partner. Survival mode had set in a long time ago. That was what I thought was most important… Boy, was I so wrong! 

You are coming down the final hill on the rollercoaster and you had let your partner off many bends ago, you are exhausted from all of the highs and the lows on this ride. You have had the wind knocked out of you on those deep drops and caught your breathe on the slow downs between each curve. You have cried for the loss of your partner and the life you once lived that was as close as yesterday. You can see the end coming close, just one more bend.. Part of you wants to hold on to the very last click and another part wants to throw your hands up finish the race you started… But then, you think to yourself, I have been on this ride for so long, “I know who I am on it but who am I off of it”?  Now what do I do? I am alone in this… You look in the mirror, do you recognize that person looking back? 

I read my journal entries from when I was in the thick of it and all I could see was my life as a care giver. I have to say, I caught myself crying for that woman I was reading about. I was so sad for her and what life she was living. She had closed herself off and was slowly fading away behind the curtains of her partner. She was letting herself go. Drinking wine every night to get through the pain and uncomfortableness of her reality. She stopped doing the things to keep her healthy mentally and physically. Life seemed so heavy in those pages. She would wake up all hours of the night unable to fall back asleep reaching for her devotionals to find a connection to hope or a little joy. 

I look back now and wish I had someone who had been in these shoes I am standing in right now lift me out of the depths of darkness I had fallen into. Thats’ why I am here for you!

Navigating the world after your role as care giver is over can be unfamiliar territory. 

It could be starting over, starting fresh or like me, took sometime to wrap up loose ends and begin to see myself as a vital, healthy person and I now have an incredible experience to share with others going through the process. And it is a process!

Getting back in to community and with people is another transition in and of itself. If you were isolated with your situation, then you know the thought of making small talk can create exhaustion and anxiety. 

You don’t have to be in a hurry. 

Opportunities will be there once the dust settles. Give yourself some down time, quiet time to reflect on where you have been. 

You will still be going through the grieving process. There will be highs and there will be lows. Remembering the funny times, like my husband ( who had Parkinson’s)  drinking a beer through a straw or us laughing over a commercial with the family trying to eat while they are sitting in vibrating recliners. There will be the sad memories of losing your partner and then angry because you are alone…. This wasn’t the plan you both had for your lives…. I am here for you to rediscover yourself, flourish in your new identity and not to go in it alone!

If you are ready to make yourself the priority. No guilt, no shame and definitely no self-judgement, just self love and self care. It is your turn now! I am ready to help you get back on your feet and reclaim your brilliance and vitality!

I am a recovering care giver and I have absolutely loved the rediscovering of myself. Finding that my time is very valuable in how I spend it and with whom I spend it with. My boundaries are so very clear.  So much more clear than ever before. Our love to care for people is stronger than ever.

Joyfully yours,

Angela & Lisa

If you feel lost, overwhelmed or alone in this phase, you aren’t. We are here!

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