A complete change of scenery, location, ideas, thinking pattern and different weather.
All these things take my mind to a calmer, saner , safe place. It is the care giver in me that keeps Lee in the forefront when I am at home with him. I know he is capable of taking care of himself, cooking what he needs, managing the daily tasks, Yet, I do more because I want to make his life easier while he is on chemo. The side effect of being on alert for another person is constant low level anxiety for me.
What I avoid: I don’t hover- But I watch
I don’t ask how are you? But I notice
I let all the little things go- Not really
( Seriously you cannot move the plates from the den to the kitchen?) OK So I think that and don’t say anything- just pick up the dirty plates and move on. Does that really sound like I am letting things go? Of course not.
Which is why I am on vacation alone in Miami right now.
Because we both know I do too much, more than I have to, a pattern that is difficult to change while I am there. I need to get out of the house to recognize that anxiety has moved in with me.
When I am home with him, I am aware of how long he sleeps, if it is a good day on chemo or a bad day that will be spent on the couch. This getting away lets me really let go and focus on what I need today, no one else. Why is that important? It resets my threshold for anxiety when I return home. I am better at showing up for him, without allowing that anxiety to creep back in so quickly.
This vacation is a warm climate, reconnect with old friends and spend time on the water for me. Mini vacations closer to home, us getting out of town together for a day works too.
I choose this vacation to spend time with friends who are purposing taking very good care of me, I am not protesting, just saying thank you. The caregiving circle is complete.