For sure our lives can be made better by the presence of others. We’re conscious of the difference certain people make and are thankful that they happen to be in the world at the same time we are. Coincidence or maybe it was always meant to be this way. I like to think the latter.
At times they help us face life changing situations and overcome challenges that hold the potential to engulf us. They sympathise, empathise, provide practical help and give us a kick up the backside mostly for our own good. And even if we’re the independent stubborn as a mule and don’t like asking for help type it really is unlikely we’re able to do it all by ourselves. I’m talking about life.
A friend and a follower of my blog recently complimented me on my positive outlook, hope and resilience; my mental and emotional strength in the way I respond to my Dad and the ongoing saga that is dementia. I thanked her but said I wasn’t sure that she was right and confessed there are times when I need to disconnect to keep sane.
breathing, choosing, living, healing, loving, being
Not disconnecting from Dad but more the daily disturbances and the thoughts and feelings that result if I give them too much headspace. Disconnected but somehow not. At the same time I sense there’s an urgency to the dark thoughts bubbling under the surface, struggling to break free and fighting for attention; the stuff that inevitably has, is, and continues to be addressed before quickly being put to the side. Another day perhaps.
hopelessness, darkness, brokenness, sadness, regret, pain, fear
Finding ways around all this stuff has been my mission. I didn’t know what to do or how to be at first and felt swamped. I appreciate more and more the advice given to me by my Mum over twenty years ago … time passes, there’s always a way. So my preference is not to dwell on the days that drag me down because if I did they would take control of every waking moment and obliterate every good thought or encounter. I won’t let that happen because these days are precious and time limited. It’s about opportunities for being.
Through meaningful conversations I’ve learned to appreciate people who have helped me be more considered, more hopeful and more patient; people who have cared for me when I didn’t care enough for myself. When a sense of perspective was crucial but the body kept going and burnout was just around the corner they’ve been there to pick me up. Coincidence or maybe it was always meant to be this way. I prefer to think the latter.
Caring for an ageing parent can be a sad and lonely road. It’s a massive undertaking for one person and can seriously affect your health and damage the special relationships that need to be protected. More than anything.
Stop for a minute. Breathe. Talk. Find someone and let them in.
… Do you know what frees one from this … ? It is very deep serious affection. Being friends, being brothers. Love. That is what opens the prison by supreme power, by some magic force (Vincent Van Gogh in a letter to his brother in July 1880)
I’m grateful for the chance encounters and random conversations and for the more purposeful ones. Conversations possess the power to lift the spirit and send us on our way, feeling stronger and able, even though we have no idea why. A word at the right time, meant just for us, then it passes by. Hear it.
In the simplicity of conversation there is something powerful at work.
I introduced myself. You introduced yourself. This has been a good conversation (Katsumoto, The Last Samurai)