Who hasn’t looked up at the sky and muttered, “Why me?”
Whether we’re suddenly caught in a downpour or find ourselves stuck on the side of the road with a flat tire, that question seems to arise.
However, for us caregivers, the question may be more related to “Why has everything been loaded upon my shoulders and mine alone?” or “Why is my life turned upside down and others’ isn’t?”
Is there really an answer to the “Why Me” question? If there is, it’s probably not a very satisfying one, at least not at the moment it’s being asked. We all go through the school of hard knocks. Unfortunately, it takes some of us longer to graduate than others.
When you’re smack dab in the middle of caregiving crisis, you may find yourself questioning all kinds of things. Then after the loss of your loved one, while you are experiencing what feels like an emotional vacuum throughout your days and nights, some may find themselves questioning things allover. Question not. Try to find guidance from other caregivers. Our characters strengthen with every positive resolve to disentangle our most frustrating dilemmas.
I know this may sound a little bit cold, but maybe we should be asking “Why not me?” After all, our world is not perfect. Is it? We live in a realm full of trials and tribulations, and some of them are bound to have a resounding impact on us.
Take heart, my friend. There is a reason why you were the one called to faithfully be there to help your loved one. Call it a mission for your life, a part of the plan. It is a great responsibility, but try to embrace the fact that you were chosen for a purpose.
We can overcome almost anything. As terrible as things may seem at the moment, we have to keep fighting and scratching our way through.
You’re right when you say that nobody deserves to be stricken with a terminal illness and no one should have to deal with the hardships that can come with caregiving, or with the aftereffects. But it is an oft-times indigestible chunk of that imperfection we call life.
Look at all the good you have accomplished by single-handedly assuring that your loved one received a better quality of his or her life. Please realize that is where you need to concentrate: on the difference you have made by loving and caring.
Gary Joseph LeBlanc, CDCS
Director of Education
Dementia Spotlight Foundation