Lifestyle

Horne: Caregiver takes a reality break

As you read this column today, I will be in the middle of a journey with my dear husband.

We will be on the road to Phoenix in a rented car, making our way through the hills and valleys of Sedona and the Grand Canyon.

I expect the journey will also be an internal one for it’s time for my husband and I to get reacquainted after many months of caregiving.

As we let go of this role for two weeks and reconnect with ourselves again, there surely will be an awakening of our spirits in a new way. Just like experiencing your children leaving the nest and the sudden roar of stillness in the house, intensive caregiving can consume your every thought, leaving you wondering what you used to talk about and how you used to be.

We laughed together last night, as we wondered if we still knew how to talk about anything besides what goes in a body and what comes out.

Can I bring all that I have learned over these past nine months to our relationship over the next seven days as we trek the hills together?

As I recently swam my lengths at the pool, I suddenly was overcome by an immense feeling of gratitude.

As I bobbed up for each breath and then submerged myself back into the water, my heart began bursting with such a warm feeling that it encompassed my entire being.

Is this what it is all about?

Coming to an appreciation of life with all of its twists and turns?

As I had brought my stress to a coffee date with a dear friend just prior to going to the pool, she listened attentively and compassionately to my rambling conversation of the many steps of preparation I was trying to deal with before leaving to go away.

Just being with her helped me to let go, as the discussion turned to all that I looked forward to sharing with others in a weekend workshop coming up and how much growth there is in moving beyond limitations we place on ourselves and what we believe we are capable of.

Just by joining in her calm and loving presence, we both felt joy and hope and peace expand.

I left with an attitude of gratitude once again.

I read the most beautiful description of wisdom the other day by William Redfield, a retired rector from New York City: “Wisdom is a lineage of spiritual knowledge that is principally concerned with the alchemy of transformation. It is not about knowing more, but knowing more deeply, and it might be marked by an alert, present-moment awareness and a compassionate intelligence. Attention and surrender are the banks between which wisdom flows.”

I don’t think it could be said more authentically or more beautifully.

So, as my dear hubby and I make our way through the red hills of Sedona, I will remember to be in the moment and embrace the pleasure of him and both our differences and our similarities and to surrender to the guidance of something greater than ourselves that will be travelling the road with us.

If you would like to join in a women’s weekend gathering on my return, April 26 and 27 called The Wisdom Circle, email me at marjorie@caresmart.ca or call 250-863-9577.

I might be up on a vortex absorbing the energy, but I will answer.

William Bridges wrote a new book about transition after the passing of his dear wife, Mondi called The Way of Transition.

As always when we personally go through a deep experience, our ideas change.

His new definition of transition he summed up as: “The natural process by which one dies to a new life.”

It’s good to be re-born.

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