The Caregiver Space is where we can gain strength and support through sharing our stories and reading about others’ experiences. As 2014 draws to a close, we take this opportunity to highlight posts from our Caregivers Stories series that you may have missed–or perhaps some that you would like to revisit.
Wanda deftly weaves changes in perspective throughout this piece on being the primary caretaker for her mother who has ALS.
Alx grieves over losing his mother to cancer, reflects on her life and mourns her loss, only to find her presence around him again.
Arthur tells the story of caring for his aging parents, while dealing with many issues, such as negotiating complex sibling relationships, his parents asserting their independence, challenges in financing medical expenses all while trying to cope with the personal and emotional challenges of being a caretaker.
When her husband’s sciatica suddenly leads to a much more serious spinal injury and paralysis, Brenda made the transition from professional health care worker to caring for her husband.
When her son was born with severe disabilities, including cerebral palsy, Donna tried to maintain a happy, normal exterior while caring for her son full-time. She began to wonder why the lives of caretakers remained relatively unexamined in public discourse and worked to change that by writing a book and becoming an activist for disabled people and their caretakers.
Caring for her husband who was diagnosed with stage four Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma at the age of 46, Bonnie quit her job to focus on her husband and young child.
Taking care of her mother shows Judy both challenges and rewards and she finds that writing about her experience paves the way for personal growth and reflection.
Susan, a mom caring for her daughter with autism, reveals the hidden emotional toll of neglecting self-care.
Most readers and publishers want a story with a happy ending. But as she worked to help her son survive a Traumatic Brain Injury, Dixie still feels anger and guilt resulting from her son’s accident and difficult recovery.
A difficult and traumatizing birth led Wendy to struggle with PTSD while caring for her daughter with Wolfs-Hirschhorn Syndrome. She writes about how she copes with isolation, financial strain and stress in her daily life.
11. One Shift
Join Brenda for a long day working in a care facility, facing the possibility of burnout as a professional caregiver.
Generously sharing his story of caring for his wife while she was dying of cancer, Bob writes about the early days of coming to terms with the effects of her treatment.
13. Out of the Ashes
Living with her husband’s chronic kidney disease takes a toll on her family, but Renee is also grateful to find much kindness and generosity extended by others.
When a diving injury leaves her young family struggling with her husband’s spinal cord injury and full body paralysis, Kristin relates some examples of how they are working to find a new life together with the help of their friends and family.