The above painting is in my pathways collection where I explore visually the idea of continuing by faith on a path. Here I imagine that this person has been driving for some time and it’s the end of the day when the golden hour of sunlight spills into the scene as it does each evening at the golden hour, filling all it touches.
Caregiving Vignette: “Respite on The Weary Road”
Sometimes the road is weary. What do you do when you are a passenger in a car and feel motion sickness? The road winds and you do too. When I was about seven I packed my colorbook and crayons for a cross country road trip, imagining coloring up an entire book, but I probably made it through one page when I learned the definition of “carsick”. If I think about it now I can remember the smell of crayola mixed with stationwagon seat vinyl and then the smell of melted crayons because I put them on top of my suitcase in the sunshine. For years after I had a red Samsonite hard-sided suitcase with lovely melted crayons imprinted.
After I already feel that initial quease set in there is no relief possible by looking forward at the horizon which is the suggested fix. There’s nothing better than being able to get out of the car. Nothing stops the feeling of great unease after it has begun welling. Nothing but the car stopping. I’d try with my seven year old self to look so hard up ahead and keep my gaze fixed but it just didn’t work for me.
Taking breaks along the way helps and it helps for the road of caregiving dementia.
They call a caregiver break “respite care” in caregiver lingo.
A quick dictionary search defines respite as a short period of rest or relief from something difficult or unpleasant.
We have a place in our town that that gives respite. It’s called “The Take 5 Club” where I take my husband three times a week giving me a five hour break. It is $35.00 per day. The alternative is to have a home care service which is $20 an hour with a for a four hour minimum. What I like about the home caregiver is they clean while they are here. But it’s $80.00 and I feel forced out of the house. And, sometimes I just want to be at home without him here. I am needing a longer respite and am checking into that now. My next post will be the results of my research.