Care-giving for my mom, while she is recovering from a fall down the stairs and broken ankle, has been a blessing in many ways. Not the least of which has been the opportunity for me to observe in myself, a real and significant change that can be directly attributed to my time doing the year long, Ayurvedic-Yogic lifestyle study at the Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat in the Bahamas.
In the past, I shied away from anyone's health problems, including my own. I've often stated that I just wasn't a 'nurse type'. The site of blood made me feel nauseous. I accepted that I was uncomfortable, often became overheated, light headed and even felt physically weak, around people who were sick. I'm the one who fainted in hospital settings - once, even falling to the floor on top of my kids, as I tried to make it to the water fountain in the hallway. The smells in the hospital and seeing my aunt all hooked up to tubes, did me in.
Luckily, both of my children were generally quite healthy, and I was able to muster the fortitude to care for them with the few illnesses that they had.
What's so different about today? I am different. I eat a mostly vegan diet, maintain my daily meditation, pranayama (breathing) and asana (yoga poses) practices in order to keep healthy myself and maintain balance. I'm up before the sun, and Mom and I have a routine figured out so that she has everything she needs in the way of help. I have cared for my mom in ways I never thought that I could stomach in the past. Not only was I fine with what was called for in order to help her, I actually felt good about helping Mom.
Not once have I felt weak or uncomfortable. In the month that I have been in this care-giving role, I can honestly say that I've felt love toward my mom and happiness in the feelings of being able to help her. Those are pretty amazing blessings from a 'non nurse type'.
It will still be another month or so until Mom is up and on her feet comfortably again. I'm really happy that what I feel is blessed in the opportunity to help her. We've had lots of laughs, and I've had plenty of chances to practice my culinary and domestic skills. Mostly, it's been fun! Before the Ashram experience, I would have never thought that. I like the new me.
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