There is a multitude of emotions that play into being a caregiver or being the one with a chronic disease that needs the care. Which emotion takes the front stage on any given day is affected by how you feel, how the other person feels, how much sleep you got the night before and what else happened that day. One of the emotions that I have to battle more often than most is guilt. I think I struggle with it the most because I can’t seem to be what I think I should be and I can’t always do what I think I should be able to do. In my own mind, I know that when I say I will do something, I absolutely know that I can do it—I am quite capable; I have the knowledge, the skills, and the ability to do what I say I can do. Then something happens to prevent me from getting to it or doing it as well as I had wanted to do, and the guilt sets in.
I am extremely fortunate that I have a job that can be done from almost anywhere as long as I have a phone, a computer, and access to the internet. Since I have all three at home, my manager allows me to telework. I come on-site at least once a week usually to attend meetings or to provide training. I often attend meetings through teleconferencing but sometimes I just need to see a person’s reaction to being able to pick up on how a conversation is really going. On the days I go in, I often set up back-to-back meetings so I waste no time when I’m there. To go onsite, it takes a minimum of four hours to get ready to go. Unfortunately, our morning routine does not always go as planned. Not to gross anyone out but sometimes the bathroom process doesn’t go as well as we would hope and it puts me way behind schedule.
Now, flip that coin. When I have to cancel going into work because Lynn’s body refuses to do what we need it to do or we can’t get someone to stay with him so he doesn’t have to be alone (note: he can stay alone for maybe an hour or even two at most but no longer than that because he can’t get food, drink, or empty the urinary drainage bag for himself), Lynn feels so guilty. He knows that I am jeopardizing my reputation for his sake.
Read more at: http://multiplesclerosis.net/blog/put-guilt-back-box/