Caregivers are compassionate. It is their nature. For most humans it is their nature and very natural to care. It can be an exhausting job though. Sometimes the compassion well feels pretty dry and empty. Oftentimes, caregivers are not the first to notice the symptoms of empty well or exhaustion until they are just about at the end of the caring rope.
It feels awful. I know. I’ve been there.
But where do you turn?
I turned to counselling. I turned to prescription drugs for depression. But neither were enough.
Until I began searching and seeking for a way that was natural, had no side-effects, and was virtually free, I was flailing. I felt like I was sinking. I looked in the mirror and didn’t recognize the face in front of me.
Then over a year, I dug my way out. I found joy and I found the me I remembered. It was so wonderful that I wanted to share my how.
But first I had to develop the step-by-step method. That took me another year and a bit. With the help of my wise woman, academic advisor, Reinekke Lengelle I have developed my methodology into something that others have found as helpful as I did.
I call it “Wordscaping”. Over the next few weeks, I’ll explain with pictures just what it is.
I am trusting that you will find it worthwhile to try it.
It’s a good way to practice self-care even if you are not a frontline caregiver.
It’s been a week since I journalled … until this morning. Now for some, and for me at other times in my life, this would be no news, a big yawn, a so what kind of revelation. But I am a transformative language coach. In other words, I assist people to become mindful through expressing themselves … often through words, but just as often through a combination of words and images.
You might think I’d feel awful confessing this. You might and I am surprised that this has happened, but I am not contrite or apologetic here. I am just noticing this. I am not even trying to explain it to you or – more astonishingly – to me.
What I have been able to do in this week’s time and space is to halfway finish a pair of socks (winter is breathing down our necks here in this neck of the woods), finish a book (the making of, not the reading of) for my 16 year-old grandson, finish 4 mini-albums, draw in my sketchbook daily and get up early every morning to do yoga and meditate. And yet as I say this I realize that I am not in that space called driven doing. I am doing but I am also noticing, paying attention.
It is a puzzle that my journal has rarely beckoned to me and that I have even more rarely acknowledged that beckoning, but for the moment I am just noticing.
I suppose the only reason I am able to even share this is that I did in fact share some time writing in my journal and plan to do more journal time this weekend when we venture up the Bruce Peninsula for some very grateful together time.
It is Canadian Thanksgiving weekend and though I don’t celebrate the official holiday, there’s never a moment not to be grateful from the soles of my feet to the crown of my head.
These few words are more an invitation to you to practice self-compassion and to be grateful for this present moment … knowing that you are precious and perfect (with much room for improvement as many of our beloved teachers tell us) and that this moment is all we have. Time is fleeting…relish every moment!
Spent a most delightful morning in the presence of a wonderful woman. What an indulgence. Sadly, an indulgence we often deny ourselves. To be with someone who fills our cup and loves us just as we are in this present moment. An act of mindfulness that is also a gift to self. I am blessed to have discovered this … at long last … that I am enough, that I am precious, that who I am can morph and transform and that is perfectly and imperfectly perfect.
Cutting through the fog of shoulds and oughts and could have/might have beens…to see the real beauty that lies within.
And to top it off a writing colleague who lives in the UK — Peter Forster — posted this in a private group just this morning… I’m excerpting of course… If you click on the links you can read more about him and of his writing.
to see the world anew.
And that’s what my dear friend does. She allows me to see the world anew, every view, texture, hue. And when I do that I grow through the mundanities and inanities of this world’s day to day. (If I made those words up, I’m sure you know what I mean.) And when I see the world in its fullness, every nuance, in the present moment, then, and only then, and only sometimes, things fall into place and the world makes sense in its senselessness.
So I owe a debt to both Peter and Louise for their gift of presence, sharing, and allowing me to see myself through another’s eyes.