We as caregiver don’t get that many good days, let alone good weeks.
I want to talk more about this bowling thing I joined. Why in the world would I bowl when I know nothing about this game and I was deep into caregiver, right?
My best friend, Julie asked me during the summer if I would consider doing something fun with her one day a week during the winter months. My thoughts and guilt said no. How could I when my Mom’s lung cancer came back, Denis was still recovering from his stem cell transplant and I could barely juggle everything else.
But my friend convinced me that we could find something that didnt’ take a lot of time and we could just get away from everything for a bit.
With a little convincing, I said yes. Julie found a non-competitive mixers bowling league on Wednesdays that were from 5-6pm I went to a practice night and met everyone and it seamed comfortable and fun.
However, honestly, I didn’t like bowling because I totally stunk at it. It seemed hard and after the practice night, every muscle ached.
I remember my Mom telling me, that this would be good for you.
My first official night was hard. My mind and heart were with my Mom in hospice care. I bowled 84, 86 and 92. Well.. I definitely was a rookie and had room for improvement. The next week, I had one game over 100, barely.
As the weeks went on I got better and starting enjoying the time with Julie and the other teams we met.
Now I look forward to that time out and come back from bowling with a spring in my step. I took a deep breath last week in the car, had tears running down my eyes because bowling brings me joy. And it gave me something fun to focus on.
I found myself look at bowling videos which was a nice distraction.
It’s ok to have fun and enjoy yourself as a caregiver. Even in the hardest times of your caregiving journey. You don’t have to feel guilty for it.
I call this a shift that has changed me in my caregiving journey. These are things you try to less your stress and reduce that burnout that creeps in.
Another shift that I made about a year into my journey was find a community. Check out the Caregiver Cup Circle and join the waitlist. The December Circle is in progress but we will open up registration again right after Christmas for just a week.
My last shift I want to share with you (and if you are on my email list, you may have heard this). It’s one that I started just a few months ago. You know what it is?!
Well, my friend, I wish you more good days than bad. More joy than stress and More hugs than tears. Remember to keep your cup full.
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