Throughout my life, I am lucky to have never been in a position to need a caregiver. All that changed last week when a van drove over my foot. I broke three bones in my foot and had surgery that day. Right now I'm in a soft cast that goes up to my knee, and will not be able to put any weight on my foot for another three weeks.
Please understand that I am in no way equating a broken foot to a cancer diagnosis, because the two things having nothing in common. The only similarity lies in the fact that both situations can sometimes leave the patient without the ability to do everything on his/her own. This last week I never realized quite how nice it is to have two working feet, not to mention all the extra energy that is needed when going through surgery - no matter how minor or major.
Aside from being in pain, I simply hate losing my independence. I have a wonderful husband who has been extremely helpful, but that didn't stop me from getting upset the other night that our home has turned into a complete mess since the accident. He was hurt that I felt he wasn't doing enough, but really I know he is doing the best he can, and I lost sight of what is important.
Losing your independence is a scary (and annoying) thing, but not only must we trust our caregiver, but we must also realize how tough it is to be in their shoes. Some things may not be exactly as we would like them to be, but that doesn't make them wrong. Maybe the bathroom could use a good cleaning, but being provided with meals and assistance when it comes to things like bathing and getting up the stairs are much more important. My advice to you that I will attempt to follow myself is to maybe let some of those little things that don't matter go, and be sure to appreciate everything that your caregiver is doing for you during your treatment and recovery process.
As long as the most important things are being provided - food, shelter, love, support - then the rest doesn't really matter. If you haven't already done so today, please let your caregivers know how much you appreciate all that they do! This blog may not show Jeff Parker exactly how much I appreciate his help every day, but at least it's a start.