Monday, May 31, 2010
Give and Take
Over the past few weeks, I have spent a lot of time with family. My siblings and I have stayed around the hospital for three weeks, moved my dad's bedroom downstairs, set up aides around the clock, worked with four different doctors, with nurses, physical therapists, and agencies. We've stocked the larder, bought equipment, sorted and re-sorted pillboxes, asked a million questions and forgotten to ask a million more, and seen things we'd rather not have seen. Hopefully, things will go smoothly so that my dad can resume his very active life.
I've also been dealing with a personal issue in the midst of all of this, and what I've come to realize about myself is that although I'm very good at taking care of people, I'm no good at having people take care of me. I don't like for people to feel sorry for me or worry about me. I don't like for them to be gentle or tender. But I am also realizing that I may need to accept these gestures because I need them. In the same way others have needed my gestures, I need to be coddled and cared for when I'm down or worried or sad.
As I've said to many a friend in crisis, "There's so little others can do. Please let me fix dinner, call or send a card. Please know that I'm thinking about you." And even though it's not about me when I say that, I know that people need to show their love and support of others, and I'm going to work on allowing that in to my life right now.
I'm opening myself to the care of others if I need it, grateful that others have opened themselves to me.