Tag Archives: Eleanor Roosevelt

Happy Thanks-Caregiving

You must do things you think you cannot do.  Eleanor Roosevelt


 We are Thankful for those who are Caregivers today:

We are Thankful for those who will be Caregivers tomorrow:

We are especially Thankful for those Caregivers whose journey has past. 

We share  in our Caregiving Journey in a special way, knowing that while our Caregiving roads might be different, our paths are filled with comfort and joy from the support we receive from each other!  

Thank You for being a part of our Caregiving Journey.  

From our Caregiving Journey to yoursHappy Thanks-Caregiving         

The Bow Tie Guys!

You see…We Might Have Cancer...But Cancer Does Not Have Us! 

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‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ is on hiatus until January 2014 while ‘TLO’ is undergoing radiation treatments.  To listen to  archived episodes of our show, simply click here! 

Christopher MacLellan is a Certified Senior Advisor, the coordinator of senior services for SunServe Social Services and the host of ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ on Blog Talk Radio.  ©ThePurpleJacket


Filed under Caregiving, The Purple Jacket

When The Caregiver Becomes Ill


You must do things you think you cannot do.  Eleanor Roosevelt

I love that quote from Eleanor Roosevelt; I wonder if she had Caregivers in mind when she spoke those lovely words? Caregivers often find themselves in impossible positions balancingPr_102_-_TRI_-_22_12_10_-_043 work, life along with Caregiving responsibilities.  Sometimes our Caregiving Cape does wear out, we are only human, even if sometimes we think that we’re not!  This past week, my Caregiving Cape took its turn on the sidelines as I became the Caree.  Stricken with Strep Throat, I was down and out for the count.  I’ve been blessed throughout my life with very few health calamities, but this illness through both of us for the loop.

ID-10014937 My first concern this week was for ‘The Little One’ as we both know that Strep Throat can be highly contagious.  We took every precaution we could possibility think of while staying as far apart from each other was we could.  One of his great lines this week was, “if I end up getting what you have, just drop me off at the hospital!”  I could see the concern in his eyes!  Even when I was ‘down and out’ my thoughts were always with him.  Then TLO finally said, ‘When are you going to take better care of yourself!’  Not being the one who gets sick, his comments hit me square in the eye.

When one becomes concerned about everything else but self, one tends to get ill, physically, mentally, spiritually.  It’s that good approach to holistic health that we all strive for in our busy caregiving day, but can be so elusive when we get lost. I know, I’ve been there!  While I’ve taken the steps to deal with my weight gain (14 lbs. eliminated!) I recognize after this past week that now it is time for me to get my embrace a holistic approach to good health and spirituality which is comprehensive of my needs.  This past week has been a great wake-up call for me.  To ‘Be A Healthy Caregiver’ means to embrace all components in life, not just a select few.

As a Caregiver, we are often planning doctors appointments, transportation, meals, you name is, we plan it.  But I have to wonder, do we have a plan for when we get sick?  One of the ‘TLO’s’ concerns this week was simply what happens to me if you get sick?  Having a plan in place, (and a back up plan to the first one, too!) is imperative to obtaining a piece of that holistic approach to good health and spirituality.  Many friend will tell you when you discuss a plan,  ‘don’t worry, call me at a moments notice  and I will be there.’  However a plan that is not written down on a piece of paper, then confirmed by all participants, is worthless.

043My plan this weekend is to make sure that all our plans are in place so that both of us can rest assured when I am not in service.   I would be interested to know what plans you have in place to help deal with the onset of illness when you’re a Caregiver?

You see…We Might Have Cancer, But Cancer Does Not Have Us!

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Filed under Caregiving, The Purple Jacket

Caregivers: Avoiding Self-Pity

be-healthyLet’s face it, sometimes Caregiving can be hard.  We do what we can and we forge ahead, sometimes it is simply mind over matter.  Eleanor Roosevelt once said, ‘With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.’  I believe that her quote can be a motto for every family caregiver! 

Eleanor Roosevelt: political activist, First L...

Eleanor Roosevelt:  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I thought about Eleanor Roosevelt’s quote today after having a conversation with another family caregiver who asked me  how I avoid self-pity when in the midst of Caregiving.    His question forced me to look (hard) at my role as a Caregiver and the times when I fell into the trap of self-pity.    I concluded that (my) self-pity  comes out in  negative comments or better yet, (actually worse yet!) negative non-verbals.   When we are in the midst of Caregiving, it is easy to fall into those negative traps.   This conversation today reminded me of one very simple statement  that ‘TLO’ taught me from his Caregiving experience with his partner Herman.   ‘Remember, it’s the disease talking, not the person!’  Wow!  Learning from your caree is one of the greatest gifts we can receive as a caregiver!   The conversation also served as a gentle reminder to me that when those late night Caregiving duties arrive, as hard as they might be, they are not planned, they just happen.  (It’s the disease talking, duh!) 

As Caregivers, we can lose a sense of self in our role as a Caregiver.   Avoiding self-pity can be as simple as finding a way to turn a negative into a positive.  Some other tips that I have found helpful along the Caregiving Journey  are: 

  •  Share your story with other Caregivers
  • Join a support group ( I recommend Caregiving.com)
  • Journal or Blog about your experience
  • Block out time for yourself, even if it’s just 5 minutes
  • Remember, “It’s the disease talking, not your caree!
  • Reach Out for Help, it’s a sign of strength not weakness
  • Be kind to yourself!

Self-pity only makes the Caregiving experience more difficult; I am thankful that I had a friend today who was willing to challenge his own Caregiving issues, while in turn, helping me with my Caregiving issues too!  Eleanor Roosevelt had it right…’With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.’

You see, we might have Cancer;

But Cancer does not have us! 

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Every Tuesday at 1:00 pm (est)

Can’t listen live…NO Worries!  All our episodes are archived for your listening convenience by simply clicking here! 

Chris MacLellan is a Caregiver for his partner Richard Schiffer who suffers from Esophagus Cancer



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Filed under Caregiving, The Purple Jacket