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Friday, November 14, 2008

Care Givers

Yesterday I had the distinct privilege of doing "stand up" comedy for a group of caregivers who were being treated to lunch by a local church. One of my "life goals" (aka bucket list items) is to do stand up comedy. Of course, this FREAKS my children OUT! (Picture my evil grin here)

Anyway, the point is, each of the people invited is taking care of someone for an indefinite length of time. One lady is taking care of a sister with Alzheimer's, one 87 year old man is taking care of a daughter with brain cancer, one their aged father etc.... I was really blessed to be there. The church members had really gone to a lot of trouble to make these "strangers" feel loved, welcomed, and special. We had games, delicious food, door prizes, some tips on stress relief, and of course the wonderful comedy of Las Donnamo. (my stage name)

This experience got me to thinking about "caregivers". Society today defines caregivers as the people I have described and has recognized their need for recognition and relief. (By the way there were CSI's taking care of the patients while the caregivers were at the luncheon, in case you wondered.) This is great BUT...

Every Mom and some Dad's are also caregivers. They are on call 24-7 from the child's birth until adulthood. When children are young, before school age, children must be supervised, fed, clothed, changed, potty trained etc... all day every day. Of course as they age the needs and demands change. No one seems to realize this is just as stressful as taking care of an older adult (at least they stay put, usually). I think we need to recognize mother-hood as just as crazy making as adult care giving. Give these Mom's time off and time out. Got any thoughts on this?


Sallie said...

I remember child rearing as being very stressful. Especially when they were preschool. But don't you think that "mothering hormones' (or whatever}, relative youth and energy help cushion us during that phase? If someone wanted to earn my gratitude during that time, all they had to do was volunteer to keep my kids for a few hours!!

Donnamo said...

I think our selective memories have deleted that part of our life so child bearing would continue.

I wrote a book during those days which reminds me how wigged out I was at times. :)

How are Kristen and baby (William?)

Kimberly said...

My thoughts are that motherhood SCARES ME A LOT!!! I definitely hear from my mom and tons of others that having children was the best thing they ever did. But then I think of all the responsibility and the job that never ends, and the infinite possibilities of really messing up this little human being...and I just don't know when I'll be ready for that. I suppose I will be at some point.

I do know that I will have to plan times that I can get away. I don't want to lose touch with hubs and have to rediscover him when the kids are grown.

Gabby said...

The good definately outweighs the bad...

The worry is something that I never expected. Like Kimberly said, there are so many ways that we can 'mess them up'.
However, God has such mercy and lavishes grace on so many of my parenting 'gaps' and fills them in with his protective hand.
It is the great adventure for sure.

I can not imagine my life without motherhood, but I know that waiting until you are READY is a must in my mind. Surrendering your life to motherhood seems infinitely easier when you choose the journey with your husband at the right time for yourself.

Surrendering your Monday night for a soccer pizza party at CiCi's is just another part of the bargain you did not read the fine print about when you were choosing!

Anonymous said...

Yes, I agree with all of you heartily!

Donnamo, I took your advice and started up one of these things myself. You and Gabby should come over and visit.