Tuesday, January 21, 2014

After Trauma: Gratitude and Love

My wife became a caregiver in 2009.  She was my caregiver.  Many times we give for granted the fact that our spouse and/or loved ones have become our caregivers.  In reality, this is a decision they made.  It is their choosing.  When a family member acquires a disability brings much unexpected stress and abrupt changes to the entire family.  We cannot forget that everything they do for us is a result of love, care, and commitment.  Also, we cannot forget that their life has changed significantly as well as ours.

Daily, I try to do something that will demonstrate to my wife how much I appreciate her for remaining by my side through the difficult times.  Expressing thanks does not require spending money.  Sometimes asking a simple question can make a difference and will make them feel appreciated.  I try to ask my wife every morning: what can I do for you today?  Amazingly, that simple question makes her feel loved, cared for, and it also sets the tone for the rest of the day.  Daily, I hug her and tell her how much I love her.  That really makes her day.  Helping them around the house can make a difference as well.

This past weekend, I took my wife to Santa Fe, New Mexico.  For us that is a short road trip, as it is relatively close to where we live.  She was very exited when she found out.  The three day trip provided both of us with time to relax and rest.  She knew I had done this for her.

After acquiring a disability, it is not uncommon to become self-centered and unaware of others.  In rehabilitation, the support we received from our family and friends can enhance the outcomes and progress.  Within our abilities, we can all do something for somebody else; we can all do something to express that we care and that we are grateful.

Love and care should not be taken for granted.

When was the last time you asked someone: can I do something for you today?

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