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Thursday, October 12, 2017

Your Dying Spouse 380 - Caregiver, Write It Down! {#write31days}

If you don't write it down, it didn't happen.

That's a bit harsh, but it really applies to the good things that happen on the caregiving journey, the islands of shared love and laughter in a sea of pain.

When you're healthy, the good stuff is easy to remember.

When the person you love is dying, you have to be intentional.

You have to make an effort to document the good. So you can share it, yes, but also - and this is important - so that when the caregiving journey is over and you've set out on your new, lonely path, your heart will be supported and warmed by the good memories that you have chosen...and the choice you made not to let the bad overwhelm them.

So keep a journal. Write down the days that were good, and why they were good. Record jokes. Record loving, kind comment.

Record everything you can while you can, because that day will come when words and pictures are all you have left in this life.

Your memories, overwhelmed by work ending in grief, will betray you.

But the things you write down...they never will.

And here we have the Dixie Chicks, performing Long Time Gone.

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. That was our mantra when I was a working nurse, IF IT'S NOT WRITTEN DOWN IT DIDN'T HAPPEN" Was so necessary to keep us on our toes with charting. I'm glad to see you are still writing it down!

    1. Paula, thank you for sharing this...it's also part of a long rifleman's world. OPE - data on previous engagements - is taped to the stock so that the current shoot can make use of past experience.

      Of course,modern snipers have it easy with digital everything. Which is great until the batteries fail.

      Pass the dope, dude.

      Thanks so much for being here!

  2. Oh my gosh! I had JUST commented on the previous post and here's another that I also do! I write it down! I have a journal I started many years ago that's intended for my son to have when I die... it was originally to be shared by both my sons, but since Jeff is gone, it'll go solely to my other son. Stories from my childhood and growing up years, on into adulthood and familyhood (is that a word? lol) and everything that's happened in my life. I do document what's happened with Jerry because it's part of my life. Everything that's happened health-wise is in there, no holding back. My son will someday learn how his momma felt about it all and how she leaned on God every hour of every day. My son will also get my prayer journal. Gonna be a lot he learns about me. Good stuff for his heart, I hope.

    Blessings and prayers for you and Barba and the woofers!

    1. Diana, what a gift this will be for your son. I'm really impressed with your courage, dedication, and selflessness in giving him something of a moral springboard with which to leap ahead in his life. Bravo!

      Blessings back, and thank you so much for the prayers. Today was a bit rough - fever hit 105.2. It was not fun.

      Praying for you and Jerry.

  3. I love journaling- and it's so great to look back on and remember how it really was at the time. I agree, holding to the good is important.

    1. Lesley, you're right...journaling is so important, and really should be a labour of love.

      Thank you for this.

  4. Andrew, I love this! Memories can fail us,but the words will always be there to remind us. I started writing journals many years ago when I first started homeschooling my kids. Now I don't write in my journal every day, but I still try to write something each day.

    I'm always blessed when I read your words, Andrew. I'm so glad you are writing these things down. Your legacy will live on and remind us to give our best and that God loves us.

    Blessings to you and Barb! xo

    1. Gayl, thank you so much for sharing your journaling experience...and especially for your kind words. Today was a few notches past rough, with a very, very high fever that required several cold baths to control. I cried.

      Blessings back, from both of us. XO

    2. I'm so sorry for all your fever and pain. Praying for comfort and strength.

    3. Gayl, thank you. The prayers are very, very appreciated.

  5. It's amazing how you always manage to turn bad things into positive lessons.

    1. Jan, this comment is such a gift! Thank you!

  6. Writing down the blessings really do make a difference in a day! And it can put difficulties in perspective. I was recently worried about something and silently complaining to myself, until I made myself look at it from a different perspective. Then what I was complaining about seemed like such a small thing. It might still be difficult, but seeing the blessing outweigh the difficulty certainly changed my attitude.

    1. Laura, thank you for sharing this. I feel the same way; having no remotely affordable access to medical care, I might be tempted to bitterness...but then I remember the people I worked with in South and Central America (and the Caribbean), in western and eastern Asia...all good people, all in the same boat, and I am in honourable company.

      No complaints there!

      Thanks so much for sharing the journey with me.

  7. Nice....some old school Dixie Chicks. And your words, our words remind me of John 1:1

    1. Tara, that I reminded you of John 1:1...I am thrilled.

      And delighted that you enjoyed the Dixie Chicks. Always loved this song, and was waiting for a chance to use it.