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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Your Dying Spouse 379 - Caregiving Remembrances? {#write31days}

We all have remembrances of married life...the souveniers and ticket stubs, the postcards we bought but never sent, and the photos.

I hope you have a big and happy photo album.

But when a husband or wife starts down that journey of terminal illness, how do you remembrance it?

Do you even try?

Do you keep catheters and hospital bracelets and the other debri of illness and care?

Do you take pictures, even knowing that they will show a shadow of the person who was formerly fit and full of life?

In a word, YES.

Social media has pushed us to have curated lives; our posts represent the best we are, and the happiest we can be. This isn't a bad thing, and it's not dishonest, but it misses an opportunity for ministry.

Everyone's going to be either a caregiver or patient at some point. And looking away doesn't change the future.

So take the pictures, even if they're ugly. Build a 'remember when' into each hospital stay, because it is a part of your shared life.

It's your job to make it worth remembering.

nd here's the Little River Band, with Reminiscing.

My #write31days posts so far are:

October 2 - Talk To A Caregiver
October 3 -  Create A Caregiver Haven

Write 31 Days prompts - 2017

I do ask that you be patient with my slow replies to your comments (which we treasure). I'm trying to stay caught up.

Still hoping to get the new and improved version of Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart up and running in the near future. Just haven't had the energy to do it yet...but if you would like to read it, please say so in your comment and I'd be glad to send you a PDF (which should fit your Kindle).

I have another blog, "Starting The Day With Grace". The focus is a grace quote from someone you might not expect (like, say Mick Jagger) and a short commentary. I hope you'll join me.

Marley update... been moved to a sanctuary, and Bay County will revise their 'dangerous dog' codes.


And marley has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.

If you can, please do leave a comment. I am trying to answer all, and I am failing, but please know this - I read and treasure each one.

Below are my recent releases on Kindle -please excuse their presence in the body of the blog. I haven't the energy to get them up as 'buttons' in the sidebar. You can click on the covers to go to the Amazon links.


  1. "Everyone's going to be either a caregiver or patient at some point." Wow, that does put it in perspective. Sometimes I've wondered about taking pictures of my m-i-l in her present state - they're usually when someone comes to see her. But I think they commemorate that she is still important, still a part of the family.

    1. Barbara, you have it exactly right. Pictures would make the point that she's still part of the family. Last Christmas my wife took a picture of me and posted it to Facebook, and I was at first mortified. I looked so sick!

      But it was necessary, to make a statement that I'm still here, and that 'this is our life'. I'm glad she did it.

      Thank you so much for being here!

  2. Andrew, so true. Thank you for the reminder that life is real, not curated. We need to build memories each day, through each season. And, we do need to cherish each other through every season, even the hardest ones. I hope you and Barb have been able to make some special memories. I'm guessing you may not have been taking many pictures. ;)

    You are making me think, Andrew. Thank you for that.

    I'm praying for you and Barb, my friend.

    1. Jeanne, yes...memories are things that we build by slow degrees, and cherishing is vital. Thank you for this!

      And thank you for the prayers. As I write this, Barb has a stomach bug, and I am the caregiver. Weird.

  3. Spot on! I've learned the importance of capturing life.

    1. Thanks, Tara! Life truly must be caught, because when it slips away in the moment it will elude us forever.

  4. Yes. I've done this. I have photos of Jerry throughout the years... at home before it all began, in the hospitals right before surgeries, shortly after surgeries, when we thought he'd be okay, when we found out he wouldn't be okay... as he's inexorably continued to decline in health. I have photos of the joy-filled days, the absolute bottom heart-broken days, the calm days, the rough days. I have it all. Because it's our life. I've never thought twice about taking those photos over the decades. As for saving *things*... no. There really hasn't been much in the way of *save-able* items. (I've always shredded hospital ID bracelets for privacy reasons.)

    This is our life. This is my husband. There's no reason in my mind to avoid remembering it.

    Thank you, Andrew, for once again bringing the caregiver to the forefront! Blessings and prayers as always for you guys!

    1. Diana, thank you so much for sharing this. I applaud the love and compassion - for Jerry, for yourself,and for your shared life - that simply overflows this comment.

      And good thought on shredding ID bracelets. I had not considered that.

      Blessings and prayers appreciated, and sent your way as well, to you and Jerry, from both of us.