A life is interrupted. The universe has pushed the “PAUSE” button. In a monumental moment, the caregiving role will continue for a few months, a few years, or even much longer. The job skills, interests, and hobbies of that caregiver are frozen in time. Can you even be the person you once were?
Once my caregiving role is over, I know the house will be quiet, and I will likely be very quiet, too. There will be a sense of loss that I cannot even anticipate at this moment.
When the universe pushes the “RESUME” button, I will have to decide about priorities. What activities will I enjoy? Will the solitary life of a caregiver make the cultivation of new friendships difficult? I will also re-evaluate my employment skills. Will any previous career paths even be relevant?
As I re-evaluate my life, I will take stock of who I am post-caregiver and not who I once was pre-caregiver. Life has changed me forever and in some respects, caregiving has made me a better person. I will need answers, but until that moment, I may not even know the questions.
When I emerge from caregiving, I hope there will be a new life out there for me to live that brings purpose. Self-examination and discovery will give me that purpose. When that day comes, I will listen to my heart and resume my life.