Tuesday, March 17, 2009

It’s not easy being green

For some reason – maybe the fact that yesterday was St. Patrick’s day - that refrain from Kermit the Frog came to my mind.

In fact, it’s not easy being anything when we’re talking about family caregiving - except maybe "blue."

It’s not easy being patient – when you’re tired and simply want to get through the tasks to the end of the day.

It’s not easy being compassionate – when you have to wonder if the person in your care is really, truly doing his best.

It’s not easy being cheerful and fun-loving – did I mention being tired all the time?

A new email friend of mine shared with me that she has slept on the couch for the past 2 years so her mother can have her bedroom. Did I mention being tired all the time?

Yesterday was St. Patrick’s day. St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland, but we don’t really know much else about him.

Perhaps, like a caregiver, he worked in quiet solitude, helping others gain quality of life to the end of their lives.

Perhaps, like a caregiver, he was tireless in his efforts to bring comfort to those who were troubled, physically or spiritually.

Perhaps, like a caregiver, he sacrificed so that he could do what he believed, in his heart, was his God-given mission on earth.

The weary, devoted family caregiver today will probably never become thought of as a saint.

But then, I’ll bet Patrick never thought that would happen to him, either. I'll bet he never even considered that one day, people would wear green and celebrate his day.

Who knows? Maybe someday we'll all celebrate the true saints that are today's family caregivers.

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