Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Happy Heart Month


The following is from the discontinued StrokeNet Newsletter site.
Claudia R. Warner was a part of the Newsletter staff at that time. I have permission from Lin Wisman, then editor of the newsletter, to repost these wonderful articles on this blog. 
The Juggling Caregiver
By Claudia R Warner

Happy Heart Month

Is is SPRING, yet? It could happen—some February months have been warm. So here’s hoping!

January was cold, cold, cold. We had terrific wind chills that lasted for days. I’m a firm believer in getting outdoors every day, but that month tested my determination. Getting outdoors makes me feel good—even on cloudy days.

Our dog, Chloe loves to be outdoors. I got her a new coat which, after I resewed part of it seems to be warm for her. She, like me, gets discontented and antsy if she doesn’t get out for a walk, run, or playtime every day Wes doesn’t need a grouchy wife, much less an unhappy dog, so out we went in wind chills that were in the minus readings of teens and twenties. We spent 15 minutes at a time and were on the move constantly. Needless to say, we both were ready to come inside after that short time. Several outings like this per day helped a lot and ensured harmony in the household.

February 14 is Valentine’s Day. It is a somewhat difficult time for many caregivers. Two out of three caregivers are female and this holiday is really geared toward women. We are used to getting flowers, gifts, dinner out, chocolate, etc. from our significant other on this day. Now that has changed for us. So, it is payback time! Now it is our turn to pamper our partners.

How about flowers for the dining area? It doesn’t have to be a large bouquet—a single red rose is a nice touch. Would your partner enjoy an outing? Movies are fun, as is a lunch outing. We enjoy going to coffee shops so we’ll do that and have a special dessert with the coffee. Or you could fix a favorite meal. Movie night is always a winner. Pop some popcorn and watch his favorite movies. They can be rented or borrowed from your public library. You could go shopping. Wes loves going to bookstores, getting a latte and browsing magazines. When the latte is finished, it is time to select the magazines he wants and then we head to one of the book sections. Usually he finds items to purchase, but if not, the browsing and coffee are fun.

Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be expensive—it is the thoughtfulness you give that makes it a special day. A heart-shaped cake decorated with heart candies is an easy thing to do. Or use M&Ms to spell a message. A heart-shaped balloon will last several days and is a great way to brighten a room. Invite a couple of your partner’s friends to come for a visit. You could even share that cake with them!

Now, as a caregiver, you must think of something for you. What would you enjoy “gifting” yourself? A book? Chocolates? Time to yourself—with NO interruptions? A walk? Something good to eat? I’m thinking of a hot fudge sundae with pecans. YUM. You know what you want/need so just do it. It will make you feel good and you deserve it!
All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt.
~Charles M. Schulz
Copyright @February 2015
The Stroke Network, Inc.
P.O. Box 492 Abingdon, Maryland 21009
All rights reserved.

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