Caregiving Coalition Arizona

Ruminations on Dying

A good place to start might be in getting a few clichés stated and behind us. The two that come most quickly to mind are: “death and taxes are inevitable” and “we are all born to die.” For sure, these two classic clichés comprehend more than sufficient inspiration to sit down with a friend on the beach under a shady umbrella and consume a sizable, chilled pitcher of margaritas made with fine aged tequila. As I see it, the trouble is that too many of us take too long in figuring this out; otherwise we’d start much sooner seeking cool, comfortable places to relax and appreciate first-rate solidarity and spirits with our friends. There’s birth and death and life in between. That “life” in between […]

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Caregiving Resources

Sometimes Caregiving Means Letting Go

My mother’s journey came to an abrupt end yesterday but mine is ongoing. I was on my way to work when the call from the social worker came in informing that Mom was in the active stages of dying. My first question was, “right now?” and she answered in the affirmative. Suddenly, my plans were altered. I found the nearest exit and began to make phone calls to family, friends and coworkers. My boss asked if she could meet me there, and I said, “Yes”, and gave her the address. Normally, I would not have done that but the need was so great that I put aside my own ego and let her into my private world of pain and grief. It was such a blessing […]

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It is a somber reminder that we all need someone in our corner who remembers us and can let the world know who we really are.

It’s Carolyn not Caroline, actually…….

As an adult child that is caring for an aging parent,  there is a certain sadness that goes with the territory. I know my mother as a vibrant woman who looked after me and my siblings while working full time and going to graduate school to get her Master’s degree in early education. Now, the woman I call Mom lies in a bed unable to care for even her most basic needs. I stand by her bed when the attendant comes in to care for her, and I hear, “Hellooo, Caroline. How are you today?” There is no response from her, but I am crestfallen. I remind them that her name is actually Carolyn and that she was a school teacher in days past. She had […]

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Arizona Caregiving Coalition

The Long Journey Home

My role, like many of the sandwich generation, has changed over the years. I have gone from being daughter, to wife and mother to caretaker of my parents. It is a journey that has many rocky paths, and the way is not always pleasant. My father passed away last July  after a short but devastating illness that took him way too soon. My mother, the day after he died, suffered from the first of her four minor strokes that has left her debilitated and forever changed. As the baby of the family, I have been tasked (blessed) with caring for her in her twilight years.  She was in Indiana at the time and the first order of business was to obtain a Durable Power of Attorney. Then, she was put on […]

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