Perhaps it is time to stop trying to fix everything? The last 5 months, since Laura died, I’ve been in a mad dash to sort everything. There is some part of me that wants everything to be OK and in its place probably because I can’t cope with any more loss or uncertainty. I’ve just spent a month at my parents house trying to fix up all the practical things that didn’t get sorted when they moved last summer and also to fix my mum’s disastrously high blood pressure. Now this week I moved on to my sister’s house to try and fix the void left by their not having a nanny for 6 weeks. I am taking the week off next week to travel on my own, but what I realize is that more than anything else in the near future I need to focus inward not outward and take care of my own needs. If I am not to burn out, I need to find time to relax, look within and reacquaint myself with who I am now and what I want. Obviously, it is easier to help someone else with their problems than to look at your own. And being here is a joyful break from NY. But suspect I’ve chosen to bury myself in caregiving right now as a way not to feel the pain of losing Laura and the pain of mum’s diminished health.
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The Deepak/Oprah Meditation series “Finding Your Flow” is a wonderful meditation to relax, focus on your inner self and find peace within yourself. I think you did this meditation when it was “live” online. That’s how I “met” you, through the comment you left on the website. It was so touching and powerful that I checked your blog out and became one of your blog readers. You can purchase the whole series online as a download or buy the DVDs. I purchased the online download version and listen to it, whenever I need it. It helps me to stay relaxed and prepare for my upcoming surgery.
Self-care is important and not always easy. Yes, take time to care for you.
I don’t know. I think you’re taking care of yourself when you’re taking care of loved ones. They need you right now and I think turning inward could be an escape from helping others, when you have the idea that you “should” be helping yourself.
Part of working through grief, etc. is to take the focus off of yourself and your feelings and be available to others. A tremendous amount of healing can take place that way. It’s just the way your recentg entry struck me, so I trust it’s ok to share these thoughts!
I hear you Steve and Jenny. And yes, I think caregiving is one of the most precious gifts we can give to one another and it is an honor to be able to help. I hope I haven’t given the wrong impression. I am having a lovely time here surrounded by my family. I wouldn’t have it any other way. It is simply that I am starting to feel profoundly exhausted (emotionally, spiritually and physically) and realizing this, I know I need to take some serious time out and look inward after this.I’ve learnt so much this last year and I am still learning. It is as if I’ve awakened to see life very differently now and I feel the need to process it in quietness. You could say, I have vipassana on my mind. And yes, jenny do call or hitch that caravan. Much love to you both, Lucie xx
I agree with Steve… leave the ‘i should be..” to others who will invariably want to tell you that you should be moving on, or you’re ignoring this by doing that, or it’s been long enough, or you’re just using this as an excuse not to focus on that, blah blah blah blah Not that you shouldn’t ignore your inner voice that tells you… who knows? If you truly think you are stuck in care taking then take a break. And yes, when you are good at fixing things everything starts to look like something to be fixed and in the end not everything IS something to be fixed.
Another way to look at the last few weeks is that you’ve spent solid time with your family – not always so easy when they are all in another country – and that you are there not just to enjoy their company but there as a useful presence: nanny, life coach … did I just write that? :-O and likely bright wise auntie to Saskia… not to mention the reverse: I imagine they get to prop you up on occasion
That said, I wish I were on that side of the pond, the better to tow a little camper caravan about and go off and explore the spiritual nexuses and gardens and places in the UK/Ireland that are in full bloom and the full thrust of summer. Beach and Britain being mutually exclusive conditions notwithstanding.
This comes from someone who took a year off after my sister died 30 years ago and then after my parents died – I was only there for the last 4 months – stayed on an additional year in that same area (of Massachusetts where I grew up). I was lucky to be in a position to be able to do that – as are you – and what I did during that time I would never want to give up. Even the seemingly inconsequential things. Turns out they weren’t. Much love, sweetie. Jenny
after all the activity
exhaustion slipping away
like an all too heavy coat
sliding off your shoulders
past your waist
sleeves revealing arms
that naturally rise
with the release of the weight
weight and tiredness
dropping to the ground
i hear you
to see out
maybe not so much grint
(grint = grit + flint? as I previously thought or more likely derived from the Italian word grinta – which you might know in French as culot, mordant, poigne or in English as gumption, fierceness, oomph but also aggressiveness… )
always a place for you in sausalito – (here well into autumn)
Beautiful! Thank you..
I’ve only just come across your blog and your story today and it moved me so I started to read some of your posts and I’m so sorry to learn about your loss. I wish you courage and strength.
All the best,