CAREGIVING: A Time For Self Care

by 02Cancer Patients, Caregivers, PeopleTags: , , , ,

“It is not the load that breaks you down. It’s the way you carry it.” — Lena Horne, singer

If you are caregiving a child (or children), spouse and/or aging parent, there is a good chance you’re feeling stressed, overwhelmed and even burned out. In fact, you may be one of the growing number of people who are trying to balance everyone’s needs – the Sandwich Generation. Even though this is a huge challenge in your life, I wonder if you can also view it as an opportunity for self-care?

When I was caregiving my husband with stage IV cancer, everyday, I made a point to accompany him to the infusion center where he received radiation and chemotherapy. I was also caring for our 13 year old son who had Lyme disease. Every morning, I drove him to school and sometimes had to turn right around to pick him up early because he wasn’t feeling well. During all of this, I continued to work full time in my psychotherapy and coaching practices while regularly checking in with my aging parents and in-laws.

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Tosha Gorden

Be A Seeker

by 00Cancer Patients, Caregivers, PeopleTags: , ,

What a touching read by this guest blogger, Tosha Gorden, who shares the Zen that she has gained from her beloved yoga instructor, Joe.

Be A Seeker (ode to Joe)

My dear, it’s time for you to learn to fly. But no, I don’t want to fly, not yet, maybe not ever. It’s so comfortable here in this nest. You tell me everything I need to know. I’m not ready to fly out on my own!

I am having an emotional reaction to my yoga teacher retiring. I literally feel the tears pool in my eyes when I think about it. This is sort of crazy, right? There are a million yoga teachers out there and some of them are good. Really good maybe, but I have learned so much from this one and I don’t feel nearly ready for him to retire. I take his class at a cancer support facility in my town – a wonderful place with tons of offerings to help those fighting cancer and their families. He has volunteered there for 20 years and, by his estimate, taught 1,400 hours of yoga. Wow! Now that is the epitome of shining a light in the world and I’m so thankful for his generosity.

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mini-blue

From Cancer Blues to Mini-blue

by 210Cancer, Cancer Patients, Caregivers, PeopleTags: , ,

It’s 3:00 A.M. and I wake up realizing that this is the last day with our beloved Mini-blue. Suddenly flooded with memories of that day when the three of us – my husband David, our son Mark and I – walk into the Mini Cooper dealership, wide-eyed and excited. Smiling, we look at each other knowing what the other was thinking, “This day is finally here! We made it!”

You see, this wasn’t any ol’ day; this was the zenith we’ve been waiting for – where one dramatic period was ending and a new and exciting one was beginning.

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4-Step Guide to Taming Your Fears When Illness Hits: A Caregiver’s Perspective (Part II)

by 10Cancer Patients, Caregivers, PeopleTags: , , ,

taming-your-fear-part-1In last week’s post, I shared with you how my world turned totally upside-down in just four terrifying days. Our son with diagnosed with Lyme disease and my husband was told, “You have stage-4 cancer.” Fear took hold of me and shook me to the core. I knew it was time to follow my own prescription for fear by using a process that I had created for my psychotherapy and coaching clients – the method I call F.E.A.R. I’m excited to reveal that today, but first, let’s get the nitty-gritty on fear.

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4-Step Guide to Taming Your Fears When Illness Hits: A Caregiver’s Perspective (Part I)

by 10Cancer Patients, Caregivers, PeopleTags: , , ,

taming-your-fear-part-2Four Days and Five Words That Turned My World Upside Down

It was a beautiful day in mid-October and my husband was getting a haircut. His barber, Fast Freddie, said, “Hey man, what’s this lump protruding from your neck?” He admitted to Freddie that he’d never noticed it before. My husband showed me the lump and was convinced that he must’ve pulled a muscle during one of his strenuous weight-lifting workouts. I said, “Let’s make an appointment with the doctor, just to make sure.” With some reluctance, he agreed.

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What You Didn’t Know About Meditation Will Calm You Down Now

by 30Cancer Patients, Caregivers, MeditationsTags: , , , , ,

Fotosearch_k0485816I am busting the myth that all meditations are quiet and serene. Actually, some can be quite active, powerful and releasing. Before jumping in and getting physical, first, tune into what’s upsetting you.

Part 1 – What’s Bothering You?

Is something upsetting you? Then, the meditation below will help calm you right down. Go ahead and find out what that is. Does it have to do with a comment someone made or how you are harshly judging yourself? Maybe it’s about your relationship or lack thereof? Good, you are getting to what’s bothering you.

Now feel it… feel your emotions completely and notice where it lands in your body. When you tune into your body, you can locate it right away. I know you don’t like feeling this, and I promise that you’re going to release it soon during the meditation portion of this blog, but for now, just feel it. Be with it. Don’t judge it as “bad”, but allow yourself to feel this feeling entirely. Good for you, because this is not easy.

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