Caregiver Island: My Family Won't Help Me Take Care of My Mother

I write this anonymously, but I have to confess: A lot of times I feel like I have no family support. I'm not talking about social services or the help from the family I live with. Their help is tremendous. No, I'm talking about my immediate family. Most days I feel alone out here on Caregiver Island....more
I really like Tracy Gibb's suggestions. I don't have much more wisdom to add, but I will add my ...more

Climbing Out of Grief: Terminal Illness Means Losing Him Twice

The first thing I lost was an emaciated dying man. ...more
My husband is chronically ill due to type 1 diabetes, dialysis, heart disease.... The man he ...more

Is FMLA Enough? Or Do Fathers Need Paid Leave?

We know that FMLA provides unpaid leave to parents within the first year of the child’s birth. But what about the families in which the father’s income is essential to the household’s economic stability? ...more
I work at a Fortune 500 company as an ADA/FMLA Consultant. Our company has offered two workweeks ...more

The "P" in AP is for "Parent," not "Provider"

Childcare providers across the country are being confronted with a new group of parents. They are referred to as AP, which is short for Attachment Parenting. The AP style of child rearing was introduced about 15 years ago by a man named Dr. Sears, and has exploded in popularity in the last 8 or 9 years....more

Empathy for the grieving mother?

Two of the least helpful responses I have received after people learned about the death of my baby girl stand out. “WhAt?!?!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!” And, “That sucks.” The single most inhumane response I received was being directly reprimanded for forcing my grief and loss onto unsuspecting and unwelcoming innocent people. You might imagine my immediate shock, horror and anger. Have I ever told a person to get their joy and happiness out of my face when I am hurting or sad? No, I do not believe I have. ...more
Thanks Shantelle. People own their feelings. I have grown into a more loving human, and I will ...more

10 Things On My Mind While My Husband is Hospitalized

My husband was recently in the hospital for nine days. He had two procedures, one leaving an 18 cm incision running down his chest, and several cocktails of antibiotics.I feel so badly for him becaue he hates being there. He doesn't get good sleep and he hardly eats.  And then there's what it's like for me as his wife and caregiver. Every time, there are many things running through my mind....more

I didn't get a chance to mess her up too much

I did not make intentional mistakes on my baby girl. Most parents do not wish to make mistakes on their children. I, however, already regret the mistakes I made in 46 days of my precious girl's life. I can only imagine how other well-intentioned parents feel when, while trying their best, they make mistakes on their children. This is an unusual thing to appreciate. I am grateful that I did not have more time to make more unintended parenting mistakes during my daughter's lifetime. I will explain this a bit better. ...more

Brief human encounters: Two songs

The other day when I exited the ferry, a woman approached me and asked me if I am in her knitting group. "Yes. I am. I haven't been there because my little one was in hospital." "Oh yes you were having a baby.  How is the baby?" "She lived for just over 6 weeks. We had her service over the weekend." I'm sorry to hear that," she said. I believe I changed the topic by saying I'll be back at knitting soon. She excitedly told me she learned to crochet the previous week. What great news! Just like that life goes on. I said farewell to my infant daughter. She learned to crochet. ...more

Lessons Learned From Living With a Disability

You can’t really understand it until it happens to you, but there is a lot to think about when you live with a disability. I wouldn’t know if it hadn’t happened to me, but it did, so I am passing my wisdom onto you readers. There are a lot of misconceptions about disabled people, and I’ll be the first to admit I don’t know everything, but I will share with you what I know. I don’t have a disability, but I live with someone who does....more
Not something, someONE. Jeez.more

The Silent Fighter

Since it is Mental Health Awareness Week, I am sure we will hear all the ways to fight stigma and about the most vocal stigma fighters. And I believe, rightfully so, these people deserve their recognition. However they are not my focus for this post. I want to recognize and thank the silent fighters. I want to recognize those who live day to day beyond the stigma....more

Do cry over spilled milk.

This is the tale of the magical breast milk. Two babies are being nourished with the milk I made for my precious girl. I get so much joy thinking about the little twins being made stronger with her milk. I kept thinking if I could just feed her her milk she would be well. She would be strong. I cried because she whinced in great discomfort and wanted her breast milk. I cried beacuse my milk soaked disposable nursing pads and because it dripped down my body and ran into the drain when I showered. I knew that if she could have her milk she would be well. ...more

I Watched You Dance: A letter to the Father of an adult son with Down Syndrome

Dear Father: I once watched you and your adult son, who has Down Syndrome, enjoying an outdoor summer concert together. I still think about that day, because I couldn’t stop staring at the two of you (but not for the reason one might think). The relationship you have with your son was one of the most beautiful, precious things I have ever seen. It brought tears to my eyes. I wanted to talk to you and your son so badly, but out of respect for you (and my husband, who gets embarrassed when I make a scene) I simply observed from a distance....more

Caregiver Island: My Family Won't Help Me Take Care of My Mother

I write this anonymously, but I have to confess: A lot of times I feel like I have no family support. I'm not talking about social services or the help from the family I live with. Their help is tremendous. No, I'm talking about my immediate family. Most days I feel alone out here on Caregiver Island....more
I really like Tracy Gibb's suggestions. I don't have much more wisdom to add, but I will add my ...more