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Multiple choices


swilkinson

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I think one of the worst things for me when I was a caregiver was to think that I didn't have a choice. That I had to look after Ray whether I wanted to or not. The solution for me was to get out of bed each morning, put my feet on the floor and and say: “Today I choose to look after Ray.” That way I felt as if I only had to do it for one day and could choose again tomorrow so it was my choice not what fate had inflicted on me.

 

I am only just getting to that place in widowhood now. I have been yearning for the past. Ray and I had 44 years together so that is a long time with one person. Because we never did do all those retirement things we had planned I always felt as if I had been robbed, as if fate had stepped in and swept all of our plans away. Of course that is not so, Ray had the strokes that limited our lives together and eventually lead to his death. It was not something personal in a way as it happens to so many, it was just something that happened in the course of our lives.

 

So now I am looking at life from a different perspective, it has taken four years and more to get to this point so you may call me a slow learner. Today I bought the letters “E” and “N” to complete my word for the year which is ENJOY. I plan to enjoy life. I did that trip to Hawaii to met up with Sarah and that has freed me from some of the anxieties about travelling alone and so I am going to plan a few more short trips for this year, fulfilling some of the other promises I have made.

 

So today I made some enquiries about a couple of trips within Australia, less angst, no currency changes but an opportunity to see some more of this great country. I found that in a couple of cases going as a single person is not a problem as the companies cater for that. I have always considered I had to have a travelling companion but apparently there are other ways of doing things alone now. I guess with so many women being single through death or divorce it is worthwhile to supply services to single women now.

 

So I am looking at some multiple choice questions including where do I want to go, when do I want to go, how long can I afford to be away. It is nice to have some new choices. I have been tied up with church etc but I can free up some time if I want to do so with a little help from others. After all no-one should be so indispensable that they feel as if they are trapped in a voluntary situation. We all need some space to manoeuvre. And that applies to everyone on here too,look for the choices, they are there you just have to find the one that is acceptable.

 

Sarah has posted me a booklet of photos she took of our holiday in Waikiki so I am really looking to get that in the mail. I usually take scenery, I don’t know why so it is nice she has some of the two of us. I did so enjoy my time with her. We have been friends on here for more than ten years so to meet her in person was a real treat for me. As long term caregivers we have so much in common. I know it is four years since Ray died but you never forget those caregiver years.

 

It is milder here now, I am not saying all the hot weather is behind us but we have had some good rain and the nights have been easier to get to sleep with the cooler weather. I am hoping to get some more swimming in before the season ends but if not I have had some time at the beach and will no doubt have time ahead to walk by the local Lake and enjoy the fresh air. I will take advantage of some of the senior discounts, our cheaper bus fares and do a little local “touristy” travelling. There is always places to go and something new to see while the cooler weather lasts.

 

I live in a lovely part of the world and am blessed by my surroundings, the friends I have close by and the church I go to. I went to a 70th birthday party at the weekend , an old school friend who I have known for more than 60 years. It was good to catch up with her brothers and some of her cousins and reminisce about our youth. I will turn 70 myself this year and so have reached those golden years, at least I hope I have. I know there will be aches and pains ahead as I see it in my older friends but hope I can handle that cheerfully.

 

It is right at my age to count my blessings. I am glad I realised at last that I have the ability to make some choices now as I think that will make a difference to my “blue days” when I so want to have Ray back in my life. I know I will never get used to being on my own but surely I can see it as an advantage in some ways.

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Sue your blog today makes me think of the quote from Trainspotting (probably prompted by it being in the news so much the last few weeks)  "Choose Life"

 

If your traveling brings you down this way let me know and we can meet up, go to a gallery or something

ENJOY is a good goal word for the year I may borrow it.

-Heather

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Sue I was a caregiver for my late husband for 10 years when he had cancer. Everyday was a new day. Just get thru it. Wake up and start another new day. I gladly did it.

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Sue :

 

I am so happy you are acting on those choices available to you now. We should do  whatever we like to do till our health permits. who knows tomorrow enjoy your now, since as we all know only change is constant so enjoy every minute we have been given cause there are no guarantee in n life.

 

Asha

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