Monday, April 9, 2012

When You Can't See Your Need Yourself

How long does it take to adjust to the routine of having a home health aide come to your house for 15 hours a week to take care of your husband?

Well, if you're me, about 4 months.

I didn't want to do it at first, but I knew it was a good thing.  I knew if I was a friend, or a sister giving me advice, I would tell me to let that person in, to let go, to take some time for myself.

I didn't want to do it because I felt like it was like admitting defeat.  Admitting that my husband needs the help.  Admitting that I need the help.

I felt guilty. Guilty that someone else was doing work that I could do. Sure, it meant getting up way earlier, not going to the gym, working through an aching back, doing things that are not particularly enjoyable, but it wasn't impossible to do it.

My husband loves me.  He pushed me to accept this help because he knows better than I do what is good for me.

Today, four months after that first time we let someone else in on a regular basis to help Michael with his personal care, I sit at Starbucks around the corner (I still do NOT want to be there when someone else is there), sipping my coffee, and blogging, and finding myself profoundly grateful for this time.

My time.
Thank you, Michael, for pushing me.  I am loving this time to do my own thing.  I couldn't see that I needed it so much.  I love you, but I don't miss doing the dirty work.  Of course, if and when you need me, I'm here.  And I'm sure I could jump right back in and rock it out better than anyone else, still. :)

To everyone else - if there is someone who loves you - listen to them.  Sometimes they can see what you need more clearly than you can see yourself.  This is just one of the things I'm learning on this journey.


gentrier said...


Donna Earnhardt said...

Good post and one that many care givers need to read.