Beanery Online Literary Magazine

January 28, 2010

How to Give Support to Caregivers

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

HOW TO GIVE SUPPORT TO CAREGIVERS

Fran

It’s not just about the person who has that disease (whatever it may be), but everyone who loves and cares for that person.  —Leeza Gibbons*

     In today’s world of expensive nursing home care, low or no insurance, and the worry of finding a good home for a loved one, more and more of us find ourselves becoming a caregiver in our own home.
     I’ve found through my last five years, as my husband’s a caregiver,  that often my friends will call to ask how he is, what he needs, if they can stop by to visit him. What they don’t think, or don’t realize, is that maybe they can help me too. 

     Care-giving is a non-stop job. It never ends—not when the person is asleep, not when they are in the hospital for something, not ever.  The home caregiver and the patient are always one – they become one as both lives revolve around each other, totally dependent on each other. As a result, my friends who have lost their spouse, after care-giving them at home, find themselves completely lost for quite some time. 
     What I find helpful is if friends and family understand that the caregiver is not just someone who takes care of the ill person.  The caregiver still exists as an individual, with needs of their own that often go unmet. 

     If it takes a town to raise a child, it surely takes a country to care for the ill.       

     Everyone, including you, knows someone who cares for an ill relative. And everyone, including you, can offer much more than help to the patient.  You have the ability to lighten the burden of the caregiver, to realize that no matter how much they love the person they are caring for, it is a burden—one they grasp onto willingly, and with the hope that they are giving the best care to this person that they could ever get.

~~~~~~

     With this in mind, I have a few tips for those of you who visit a home where there is a caregiver.
     First, when you

(more…)

January 2, 2010

The Gift of Christmas

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

THE GIFT OF CHRISTMAS

Fran

     We all know the true meaning of Christmas, different for many of us, but the same too. For us, the year, and this Christmas, was very, very different.
     We have been married for forty-five years. During that time we have rented homes, sometimes comfy ones, sometimes not so good. The time was never right to buy a home of our own—it just never worked out for us.  We’ve had wonderful landlords, and we’ve had ones that should never own property. 2009 brought for us the biggest change in our living conditions and I’d like to share it with you all.
     In April, friends of ours decided they needed to (more…)

May 13, 2009

Mother’s Day

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

MOTHER’S DAY

Fran

Two toddler boys run in for hugs and kisses,
     but someone’s missing
Two little boys, bearing gifts made themselves,
     but someone’s missing
My teenage sons, now working, take mom out for lunch,
     but (more…)

March 19, 2009

Little Ears Are Listening

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

LITTLE EARS ARE LISTENING

Fran

     “I want to be a body tool when I grow up!” little Jerry told his mom.
     “A what?” the very surprised mom asked.
     Jerry looked her square in the face and said, more loudly, “I told you I want to grow up to be a body tool just like daddy.”
     The young mom was at a loss for words. Daddy was an ad executive who occasionally did ad work for tool companies, but to her knowledge the little boy had never seen any of them. And the last thing she wanted was for her son to (more…)

January 31, 2009

THE SWEETNESS LASTS A LIFETIME!!! An Adoption Reunion Story

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

THE SWEETNESS LASTS A LIFETIME!!!

AN ADOPTION REUNION STORY

Fran

     1964, a warm June day when my daughter began life. Placed in my arms, the sweet face, dark hair, such tiny feet and hands. All five pounds of not much of anything.
But such an impact on my life!
     As I sat there after she was taken to the nursery, I realized that her life was to begin anew, with someone else to love her, care for, and raise her to adulthood. Not my choice, but at age seventeen, with no support, and no way to provide a home, I knew, deep in my heart that she needed (more…)

May 14, 2008

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE!!

—written by Fran

Being a caretaker for a loved one is challenging, life-changing and a lesson in finding joy in the simple things. It is riddled with medical crises, often accented by runs to the emergency room. Below is a page from Fran’s journal—written on a particularly calm day, March 31, 2007.

5:00 Saturday morning….  Time to get up, BC (our cat) has the insane idea she is hungry and now is the only time that will work for her!!

5:20 – Coffee, hot, creamy, and absolutely divine….I am now awake and going.

6:30 – All showered and ready for the day.  Time to check on Jim, get him his first of the 35 pills he takes each day.

7:30 – Help Jim get dressed, he decides on breakfast, we eat.  It’s a pleasant time to “chat”.  No (more…)

April 20, 2008

WHERE ARE YOU NOW?

—written by Fran

This poem was written by a young woman, Fran, in memory of her Aunt Kay and Kay’s six-month old daughter, Kate—who disappeared in Rhode Island in 1949 after a shopping trip. Authorities found the car (with the passenger door open), Kay’s purse and a baby blanket. No sign of the mother or child was ever found. Even today, Fran is left wondering if she has a cousin out there somewhere…

Do you walk the earth,
do you look like me?
Do you even know you’re
part of our family?

Have you known (more…)

March 8, 2008

LOSS AND LOVE

—written by Fran 

On January 9, 2007, an important family member died.  Merc, a cat at fourteen years of age, announced that morning it was time. We knew, had known, just couldn’t make the decision.  Ahh, but there is a wiser source,  (to continue reading this story click on
Loss and Love )

To read another cat story click on  The Cat With the Calico Tail

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