Imagine being told the only way to end your suffering would be for your loved one to die.
That is the sad reality Alzheimer’s families live with every day.
Death is the only true escape for the suffering they endure and yet, they continue to show up to care for their loved one in hopes of putting off the inevitable, even if only for one more month, one more week, one more day.
Can you even imagine loving someone that much?
Can you even imagine someone loving you that much?
Hopefully you can and hopefully you have people in your life on both ends of that spectrum — those you would be willing to do that for and those who would be willing to do that for you.
Isn’t that one of the truest meanings of life? To love and be loved?
Perhaps I would add, to care and be cared for.
If that’s true, and I believe it is, then you are fulfilling one of life’s truest meanings right now.
If you are a caregiver, then you are fulfilling one of life’s truest meanings right this very second as you read these very words.
If you were a caregiver, then you have already fulfilled one of life’s truest meanings. The rest is just icing on the cake.
It’s hard. So hard. In fact, I would argue it’s the hardest job in the world. And it’s going to get a hell of a lot harder as time goes on.
But isn’t it also beautiful?
The act of caring for another human being?
The act of loving someone so much you continue showing up every day to tend to their every need even though there is absolutely no hope of making them better?
The act of magnifying your suffering and maybe even prolonging it by doing so?
The act of wanting so badly to let go, but instead you desperately cling to that one last thread with every ounce of strength and fortitude you can possibly muster on any given day?
Yeah, that’s beautiful.
It’s hard, so damn hard, but it’s also beautiful.
And sometimes when the pain and the grief and the trauma subside, even if only for a brief moment, I feel just the tiniest bit lucky that I got to experience that kind of love.