Happy Thanksgiving everyone. I know it’s been a while since you’ve heard from me. My mother passed in May of this year, so I’ve been a little busy figuring out next steps, missing my mom, and being thankful for the privilege of knowing her and for what i know she’s glad I still have in my life. One of the good things I still have in my life here on planet Earth 🌍 is Care Your Blues Away, A Better Way to Care. The first thing I want to say is I am thankful for all of you who have been a rock for me during this time. It has been difficult but not insurmountable due to the strong support I’ve had from you along the way. Here is a long and warm hug, plus a song of gratitude for all of you because you are precious to me and very much appreciated.♥️☺️♥️😌♥️
So, on to Care Your Blues Away.
This morning I am on my way to apply for assistance for another patient of mine. I’m walking 10 city blocks to the office where I will apply for the assistance. This is one of my strategies to integrate exercise into the morning to start of my workday. The brisk walk helps my mind get rid of any left over clutter from the previous day. The walk is good for my brain and my body because it helps me focus my thoughts and movement on positive things. An early brisk walk is a can do, self-esteem booster that prepares you to create a successful day.
A little more than a year ago, my primary doctor took me off of MetFormin, one of three medications prescribed in combination to lower the effects of diabetes. Apparently, I was doing well enough to discontinue taking that one medication. Approximately two weeks ago, my doctor gave me some more really good news. He took me off of the blood pressure and cholesterol medications, the other two pills of what’s known in medical circles as the diabetes cocktail. My doctor says I’m doing well and I no longer need the other medicines. Imagine that! He also said that since I had my mother with me for 60 years, the minor weight gain I’m experiencing during this time of transition is nothing to worry about. And with a plan in place I will be able to turn that around soon. So, look forward to hearing about a healthy weight challenge courtesy of Care Your Blues Away to you. Our health is very important!
So this Thanksgiving, I am so grateful for being born to a wonderful mother who gave me even more wonderful memories, and the rock solid support that I received from my family, church family and friends, plus the excellent medical care and guidance that I received from my primary doctor.
I hope that reaching out to caregivers about my experiences encourages the practice of self-care while caring for patients. Never give up hope and stay resilient!
Grace in Work Exercise
Caregiving can be rewarding yet difficult work. It requires caregivers to help people who may not be feeling well or who may not necessarily want assistance, even though the assistance is necessary. Because of this inherent job difficulty, a caregiver must have advanced level skills in lifting a patient's mood. This caregiving duty requires a lot of positive focused energy and dignified interaction with a patient. So, it follows that caregivers need to re-center themselves at some point in time during the workday. The re-centering break is necessary so you can replenish your positive energy, restore focus, and bring back grace and dignity to your workplace. Be prepared to take 10 minutes of time during your work day to be a better caregiver.
My 10 minute re-centering exercise is a reminder of how I should conduct myself with gentleness while I'm working. The activity also provides me with a bonus, a cardio aerobic lift. I developed a Dance-Exercise featuring a port-de-bras or carriage of the arms, which reflects the arm movements that caregivers do while working. The repertoire begins with a Mindfulness breathing exercise then stretching, reaching, lifting, and sweeping movement that can be performed while seated or standing with your feet facing forward, shoulders distance apart. In addition, there is an advanced soft lunge movement that allows you to travel when standing and performing the sweeping movement with your arms.
This is the first in a series of short Dance-Exercise videos about keeping grace and dignity in caregiving. We would love to have you come along with us on our movement journey and your feedback would be very much appreciated. As always, consult with your doctor before beginning any exercise program. For more information about the Dance-Exercise video series, please watch Grace in Work Exercise: Episode 1.