I’ve co-authored a book on Family Caregiving! A wild ride for sure, and one I didn’t realize I was on until I did.
My writing on the subject began while enrolled in a memoir class just a few years ago. Though able to choose any topic I wished, my mind returned over and over to my long history of giving care. I got to share my stories aloud and see how others responded. Later, I joined groups of caregivers and consultants and saw the need to recognize those who, like me, were wired to support family needs while navigating the many challenges to themselves. There are lots and lots of us! So many that I began to look at the actual numbers and it amounts to exactly what Rosalynn Carter states:
“There are only four kinds of people in the world. Those who have been caregivers. Those who are currently caregivers. Those who will be caregivers, and those who will need a caregiver.”
Bingo. We have a tsunami of need coming our way as America ages and we are, for the most part, obliviously unaware of the consequences. We hardly know how to ready ourselves to be caregivers for each other and still maintain our own healthy balance much less improve our systems. I witnessed the effects in the halls of hospitals watching parents wringing their hands, and in elder care environments where we mistakenly think things will automatically be taken care of by staff. Well, they won’t.
Addressing how we manage ourselves is the trick I needed to speak to with my writing. What do family care members need to know? Not the least among the skills required is taking your place at the table in the circle of care, recognizing what help you need, and becoming part of the change to get that help in place. The whole of it inspires risking a step toward leadership (my next favorite subject to write about along with mind-body-spirit wellbeing!)
Taken together, you’ll see all of it in Fruits of Care, A User’s Guide to Family Caregiving. I found the perfect writing partner, and together we crafted a vehicle to ring the bell of awareness, resilience, introspection, and skill to help all of us create a perspective that is a necessary step one.
“Most people believe the mind to be a mirror, more or less accurately reflecting the world outside them, not realizing on the contrary that the mind is itself the principal element of creation.”
― Rabindranath Tagore
As you ‘think on these things’ I hope you love our book! You will certainly find it useful. Crafted similarly to my Yokibics Workbook for Everyday Living, we include inspirational quotes, reflective questions, space for your own thoughts, and a good dose of content to support one of the most important roles you will ever embrace.
If you are a caregiver, know a caregiver, or think you or someone you know will be one anytime soon (Rosalynn knows!) this book is for you.
Listen to my podcast interviews for more, and happy to have your comments.