1 stroke, 7 months, 27 lessons: part two

  • Sometimes you HAVE to rebel rouse, be unreasonable, break the rules and upset ‘official’ people to get what you need for your loved one. Don’t accept what the ‘system’ tells you - challenge authority. Challenge the system. They don't believe in older people, they really don't. So we have to. Trust your gut. You are stronger than you think, much much stronger.
  • Some hopes, dreams and expectations will need to be dropped as if big hailstones are descending from the sky and cracking on impact. In adverse circumstances they can hold you back, and you’ll resist NOW. Which equals disappointment. So let them go and allow yourself to be surprised by new possibilities.
  • Hair can grow back after it falls out!
  • You may feel as if you’ve been plugged in to a mains water supply as the tears are sometimes never ending and flow when you least expect them. But don’t worry, you won’t dehydrate. Let them flow on.
  • You will be wowed by just how strong your family can pull together.
  • Your love for an ailing parent grows and grows and grows as you embrace each passing day. The amount of love you are capable of will crack your heart wide open in otherworldly ways.
  • Yet, caring for an ailing parent is beyond EXHAUSTING. Carers are amazing folk and we need to support, love and protect them.
  • You will become increasingly grateful for everything you do have in your life. BIG WOW.
  • Talking of disappointment... your resilience to it grows until you swing like a butterfly (thanks Mo Ali for that one).
  • You’ll know the difference between what really matters and what doesn’t anymore. Time to cut the crap.
  • Laughing, a lot, helps. Sillyness and play are some of the most emotionally intelligent things you can do during times like this. You just have to give yourself permission to do it.
  • Improvement and progress can be breathtakingly slow but it is movement in the right direction. Think Kaizen. Patience. Lots of patience, waiting and waiting some more. Waiting without expectation - that’s hard.
  • My Dad is not immortal, he will die. I can love him, shout loud for him and get him the best care I can but ultimately, this is his journey, his life. That requires more letting go. Tough job.
  • What happened to Dad was thoroughly tragic and a catalogue of missed opportunities. But in a way it isn't. It happened when he was 86 years old and for 85 of those 86 years he had brilliant health, was fit and strong and lived his life the way he wanted to. Not many people can say that about their life.

Namaste fellow soul travellers xo

(Part One is over here!)