I see your eyes and I know how lost you feel right now. I can imagine your thoughts and all of the emotions you are feeling; angry, sad, mad and blaming all at the same time. You are in shock. This child or loved one that you have tried so hard to love through all the tough times; love away their hurt, their pain, their illness is really in crisis.
You may not be able to hear this now, but I want you to know of a truth that I learned going through my son’s crisis; sometimes we just cannot love someone through something that they are experiencing. It is not a reflection on how much you love, how big your heart is or how hard you try to do all the right things. You see, it isn’t about you at all. That’s the hard part of all of this and as it starts to settle in, you may realize that this situation was going to occur no matter what you did or did not do. If there were an action you could take to make it better, you would do it. When there is no action that you can take, it can feel like you’re falling into a deep hole. I understand. I have been exactly where you are. You are not alone.
Many Caregivers, whether mom, dad or grandparents, are natural born nurturers and most of us really pride ourselves on the way we care for, love and support the people in our lives. I know I do. The risk with this is that sometimes we forget that it’s not really our responsibility to make it all okay. While we may coach, teach and guide our loved ones along their path or through decisions that they need to make, we cannot assume responsibility for the actions taken by another person, even when it’s your child choosing unhealthy habits or an unconventional, jagged road.
I’ve sat in the waiting rooms and Doctor’s offices, just like the ones you’ve been waiting in recently. When you are there, do you take a look around? I imagine that you see the other Caregivers who are there too. When my son was in crisis, there were times when the waiting rooms were so packed with parents and Caregivers that there wasn’t anywhere for me to sit. One would think with all those people going through similar circumstances, you might feel a bit more supported. Yet, it feels so lonely.
I know that it may feel like no one could possibly understand what you are going through or what you have been through. I want you to know that there are people who do understand and who have been down the road you are on. Often it takes a little bit of trusting and searching to find the support that you need. Please do not give up on yourself or your loved one. You will get through this bumpy time and you’ll find your way back home again.
With much love,
A Mom who has been there