Mom and I are doing well. She still has some pain from her fall. She stopped walking much, for about three weeks, leading up to the fall, which may be why she fell. She is back on a regular regimen with her walking and exercise.
All of my stuff is good. I remain dedicated to keeping mom safe and doing as much as I can, to remain healthy.
I miss my life before caregiving. I miss my mom’s life, before needing me. She has always been an active person.
This is a photo from a couple of months ago. Mom is 91 years old and her son, me, is 69.
A friend of mine is a neuroscientist. He is also a grant writer. He has the ability to take ideas of great significance and arrange words that explain those ideas, in great detail, with as few words as I have ever seen.
With that in mind, here is my attempt at doing that, with a summation of most of my life at this moment in time.
My life is mostly about keeping my mom safe and staying as healthy as possible myself.
“If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed. If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride, and will encourage you to do another task, and another, and another. By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that the little things in life matter. If you can’t do the little things right, you’ll never be able to do the big things right. If, by chance, you have a miserable day, you will come home to a bed that is made. That you made. And a made bed gives you encouragement that tomorrow will be better.” ~ William H. McRaven
“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.” ~ Calvin Coolidge
I walked down Reservation Rd and into the sand at the Marina State Beach. This was my first glimpse of the Pacific Ocean. I remember the wind was blowing and only one other person was within site. I felt alone, but peaceful. Maybe someday again.
My trip had began at Skidaway Island State Park, near Savannah, Georgia. My feet had taken me to Kingman, Arizona. A friend drove me to Paso Robles, California and from there I was on foot again.
How could I have possibly lost 100 pounds in 11 months. The next two paragraphs will give an explanation of sorts.
I ate approximately 1800 calories every day. Here is the estimated breakdown of those calories. 50% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 20% good fat. 75% of the calories were eaten before 1:00pm and none were consumed after 6:00pm.
Monday, Wednesday and Friday would see me doing aerobic exercise for around 30 minutes. Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, resistance training for about the same time, 30 minutes. Sunday was a rest day. Some yoga, stretching and balance moves were mixed in with each workout.
My weight loss came because I burnt more calories than I consumed.
Another factor was the motive! The Intensive Care Unit woke me up!
I had conversations with a lot of caregivers in 2013. Mostly though, they shared their experiences and I listened. Would I ever become a caregiver?
Here I sit, posting this, on January 15th, 2020, and in 9 days it will be 4 years that I have been here. Mom is 91 years old.
About mid 2015, stuff started changing. Pain crept in, my peers, in large numbers, were getting sick and/or becoming immobile, and some were dying. Was I getting old?
Getting old, for me, has taken some getting used to. I aim to continue on, doing stuff, staying busy, being relevant. I want to keep climbing my mountains and when he comes to get me, I will go, but may ask for another day. I like it here!
Mom has been in a routine of taking about 3 to 5000 steps every day. That is, until about five or six weeks ago. Why? That’s another blog post, for another day. Since then, she’s been taking 1 to 2000 steps per day. The steadiness she had enjoyed has dissipated somewhat. On the way home from urgent care, she told me she will get back on her prior routine. No broken bones.
This quote helped create a foundation for everything in my life.
“When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, ‘I used everything you gave me’ ” Erma Bombeck
A Prayer for the Game of Life
“DEAR GOD, help me be a good sport in the game of life. I don’t ask for an easy place in the lineup. Put me anywhere you need me. I only ask that I can give you 100% of everything I have. If all the hard drives seem to come my way, I thank you for the compliment. Help me to remember that you never send a player more trouble then he can handle with your help…
And help me, Lord, to accept the bad breaks as part of the game. May I always play on the square no matter what others do…Help me study…THE BOOK so I’ll know the rules…
Finally, God, if the natural turn of events goes against me and I am benched for sickness or old age, help me accept that as a part of the game, too. Keep me from whimpering that I was framed or that I got a raw deal. And when I finish the final inning, I ask for no laurels; all I want is to believe in my heart, I played as well as I could and that I didn’t let you down.