Push Button

The lighted button
Inside the elevator
Highlights a request

Step in and push it
The doors should close more quickly
If in a hurry

Sometimes they close quick
Other times there’s no difference
Depends on the “lift”

Frustrated people
Punch it over and over
Fret and unravel

We will not be late
We think we are in control
Despite what we know

Elevator doors
Will choose if to close quickly
Regardless of us

Daily Prompt:  Unravel

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Serve Me

Of course, we all want to avoid our loved ones being hospitalized. But if the loved one is stable condition and the opportunity presents itself, a caregiver just might possibly confuse the hospital for a resort hotel.

It’s certainly a change of scenery from our daily mundane view. It’s a chance to engage with other people and explore new surroundings. It may not be a fancy restaurant, but most hospitals offer some kind of cafeteria. Caregivers who serve others meals on a daily basis will always jump at the chance to have their food served by someone else.

Today as I opened the door to the hospital cafeteria, it occurred to me that I was blindly walking into a place where I had absolutely no idea what would be on the menu. What a welcome dilemma for someone who always knows what’s in the refrigerator. An exciting culinary mystery to be solved and savored.

As I walked into the hospital cafeteria, a heavenly spotlight was shining on the buffet counter. There was glorious looking food inside it, and nice people behind the counter to serve me. I’m pretty sure I heard an angelic chorus singing and happy people everywhere.

I returned to my husband’s room after a change of scenery and carrying a styrofoam container of nourishing food. It was extremely tasty and satisfying. The best part was that I didn’t have to make it, I didn’t have to serve it, and someone else actually served it to me. The trip to the cafeteria was a delightful experience. Ask a caregiver. They will understand.

Daily Prompt:  Blindly

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Steadfast

Today, I must be at the hospital wth my husband who has pneumonia.

Today, I am arranging the care of my father-in-law who is home alone because I must be with my husband.

Today, I am arranging the care of my dog and cats who must be boarded because I must be with my husband.

Today, I am creating necessary plans to ensure the safety of my loved ones because my first priority is to be with my husband.  Even though I’m feeling tired and there is much to be done, I will make the plans fit together somehow.  I will not surrender and I will not be deterred.

Today, I am a tenacious spousal caregiver.

Daily Prompt:  Tenacious

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Happy Hens

Down on the farm, out in the back pasture,
Sits an old chicken coop outhouse, an outlier on the property.

Inside the outdated structure, a rooster begins the day.
He greets each sunrise with outstretched feathers and an outstanding crow.

The outspoken rooster announces each morning from his outcrop.
The hens are always entertained by his outgoing morning personality.

The rooster’s glorious feather outfit nearly outshines the sun.
As the hens laugh and cluck at this outrageous alarm clock.

When the rooster finishes his outlandish performance
The hens happily depart outside to work on a positive egg outcome.

The rooster takes his position for the day near his outpost
Guarding his happy outdoor hens and proud of his own sunny outlook.

Daily Prompt:  Outlier

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Guilt Free

A long day busy
Doing the caregiver stuff
Making the time count

Between all that time
There were moments of great fun
Seeing my sister

Sitting in big chairs
Chilling, talking, and laughing
Getting pedicures

Feet in denial
Unnecessary expense
Happy toes rejoiced

Daily Prompt:  Denial

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Love Won

I cannot sink the putt on the 18th hole to win the Masters.
I cannot get a base hit to score the winning run in Game 7 of the World Series.
I cannot make the half-court buzzer-beater shot to win the NCAA Basketball Championship.
I cannot jump several feet into the air while surrounded by defenders and come down with the Hail Mary pass to win the Super Bowl.

I can, however, steady my husband as he transitions from the lift chair to his power chair. I can also bathe and dress him. I can also prepare and serve every meal for him. I can also enjoy laughing wth him. And of course, I can love and support him.

I don’t have a huge trophy to hoist over my head. I don’t have sponsors to thank for their financial support.  But I can certainly thank my “team” of doctors, nurses, therapists, friends, and family.  My husband is the reason I have trained so hard to compete.  He has kept me motivated with his love and appreciation.  It doesn’t bother me that I will never win any athletic championships because I’ve already won his love.  I am his champion caregiver!  🙂

Daily Prompt:  Champion

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Balance Point

Sitting on the cusp, I have a far and wide view
Sitting on the cusp, I can see greatness
Sitting on the cusp, I can see hardship
From the cusp, I can see a new normal

The point where I’m sitting is created from where two lines have met
This pointed cusp creates an edge
This pointed cusp creates transition

I will sit awhile on this edge to prepare for a new transition
I will sit carefully on this edge so as not to tip the balance

Sitting on this cusp of something unknown

Daily Prompt:  Cusp

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Storm Helmet

Thunder booms above
Glued to TV coverage
Tornado warning

Went to find cover
Hid inside inner bathroom
Kitchen pot on head

Storm has passed by now
Preparation was prudent
Taking pot off head

Daily Prompt:  Prudent

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Resume

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.

Daily Prompt:  Pause

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