Saturday, 25 October 2014

UBC - Day 25 - When Fear Strikes - Tips for Carers


Welcome to today's post, I have been stretching myself with writing these posts as I am still in some of the situations and the writing has not only been therapeutic but it is helping me to see different sides to my role as a carer.

Art from my Art Journals

When I look back I am amazed I have come this far, and that mum is a well as she can be.  I had many times when I wondered how long she actually had left and would start to stress over what needed to be done and how I felt about the matter.  Sometimes it can feels as if my whole life as been taken over by my role as her carer, and then when it stops there will be a big whole waiting to be filled.  

Fear of what is going to happen, what might happen and what could happen are all things that at some time go through your mind and you worry about.  For a long time I didn't want to ask for help as I thought I would be seen as weak and unable to cope 'I should be able to do this on my own' I thought, I was upset that I couldn't do it all, and then when I began to show the signs of stress the fear focused around whether the social workers would come and take mum and put her into a home against our wishes.  I worried about my own health and the long term affect of caring in isolation, If you don't have that support network and outlets that I talked about in previous posts, you are at risk yourself and your health could suffer.


Fear is something that can immobilize you and can cause you to spin round in despair, or it can launch you in the direction of taking action, you have to identify the source of the fear and then take steps so that the fear does not manipulate you.


I learnt over time to take things in my stride, deciding that there were going to be many things that were out of my control and the only thing that I could control was my response.  I can make decisions about what I do based on the situation presented in front of me.  If I acted out of fear then I would be tossed around from one decision to the next not knowing which solution would be for the best.  When I let go of the fear I was able to see the situation and options from more than one side.  So while you might not always able to make a difference to the consequence, you can be in control of how you get there though your actions and your own strengths and limitations.  


I constantly lean on my faith and pressing in, reach for the finish line.  I know that what presents itself isn't necessarily what it really looked like and the saying FEAR = False Expectations Appearing Real is so true.  If I show fear in my role as a carer and what I have to do, then I have to imagine what my mum must be feeling and then that is a whole different spiral.  The thing that I always come back to is looking at how I can express what I am feeling, learn to articulate it and by holding the mirror up to fear calling it out by its name and sending it on its way!

For now recognize that you will be afraid at times but identify where those fears come from and work through them, you are already doing a good job.


You can also click on the 'Celebrating life' image to be taken to the rest of the posts from the Journey of a Carer.
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