“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” –King Solomon
This COVID-19 journey has become a long one. Did any of us have an idea it would go this far? I doubt it, and yet here we are. Some of us might be a little worse for wear, but my hope is that we’re all striving to live life to the fullest capacity, even from behind closed doors. No doubt, this can be a challenge, but striving to enjoy life as it comes while waiting for the curve to flatten can be rewarding. It can also be a gift to be with the people who wait with you.
A new togetherness
In the United States, nearly a quarter of caregivers are between 45 and 64 years of age. Given the demographic, we can safely argue that many balance caregiving while also raising kids. As the world awaits the passing of a pandemic, additional folks have joined many caregivers at home; spouses are tucked away in home offices as school-aged children study nearby.
We’ve been given an opportunity to slow down and be still, together. This is also a chance for a closer look into each other’s lives, to encourage and back one another in a way that’s new. We thought that we understood the effects that daily experiences have on our family members, but being mixed in together 24/7 is a different kind of cocktail. The kids suddenly grasp the depth of caregiving, somewhat. Meanwhile, parents observe their studying children and are transported back in time, beads of sweat gathering at the mere memory of taking a chemistry test.
On any caregiving day, a familial caregiver sees two faces: their own in the mirror and the face of the person for whom they provide care. Sometimes those are the only two faces seen. But the pandemic has turned the tables on caregiver isolation. Extra family at home can be a happy change and not just for the caregiver. Don’t think of sheltering in place as forced togetherness. Everyone benefits.
Togetherness may be one of the few positives rising from the ashes of what was so easily taken for granted a couple of months ago. The road to normalcy can’t arrive fast enough, but before the curve finally flattens out, let’s not merely endure the wait but instead embrace the ones who journey with us.
Note: Alzheimer’s News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Alzheimer’s News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Alzheimer’s disease.
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