My end of year post has several purposes not least of which is to say, good riddance to 2021. I’m happy to see it go!
Let’s Not Dwell on the Past
I’m not going to expend any effort recounting the numerous issues encountered during 2021 except to say that my heart goes out to those families affected by COVID, natural disasters, gun violence, and all the unavoidable things that life throws at us. There were, thankfully, some positive notes including; successfully continuing to publish both of my blogs despite all the craziness going on around me, celebrating my 15th wedding anniversary with my wife and friends, watching my daughter emerge from middle school and pandemic hell as a capable, intelligent, interesting and funny human being who is obsessed with Taylor Swift, and expanding my efforts to shed light on the plight of family caregivers with articles published on lifeeffects.teva and in a feature article in Kiplinger magazine. Most important this year was the improvement seen in J’s condition.
The Secret is Out – Read “Tips for Making Caregiving an Easier 24/7 Labor of Love”
In early December, Catherine Siskos, a long-time writer at Kiplinger wrote a sensitive article on the perils of family caregivers featuring yours truly. I decided to allow her to use my real name and my wife’s, and mention this blog published using a pen name thus revealing my secret identity. The reason for this was simply that as we approach the 5th anniversary of Jacquie’s stroke (Feb 11, 2022), I decided that I need to put my full weight (including the pandemic 20 I’ve gained) behind my efforts to raise awareness of what family caregivers do for their loved ones and for society. I will still continue to protect my wife’s and family’s privacy as best as possible, but enough people have supported us both through direct involvement, and financially through the blogs and GoFundMe that there’s little point to staying anonymous.
Please help me now by sharing our story with other caregivers and those who are empowered to help the caregiver community.
I Like Being a Paid Contributor and I’m Looking to Expand
Despite Teva’s legal issues, I plan to continue to write articles for lifeeffects.teva because I believe that it is providing valuable information to the caregiver community. My most recent article published by lifeeffects.teva gives you 5 tips to get the most from your doctor as a caregiver. Effectively communicating with your loved one’s doctor(s) is critical skill for caregivers. These simple tips will help you become more confident in accurately representing your loved one’s needs and understanding the doctor’s advice and direction. Since I posted about the article’s publication in November, Lifeffects created a video to highlight the article.
Remember: While I am a paid contributor to lifeeffects.teva, I do not promote the company directly nor am I involved in reviewing or recommending any of their products. In my opinion, lifeeffects.teva provides useful advice to patients and caregivers and I’m proud to contribute to it.
Looking Ahead to 2022 – Hope Springs Eternal!
Note that I did not say “looking forward” as that implies a sense of positivity. Honestly, I have no idea what to expect in 2022 — I learned my lesson trying to predict what might happen in 2021. I do know that I will turn 65, that five years will have passed since the stroke, that my daughter will enter high school, and that I expect me and my family to get more vaccinations or boosters or whatever. As I do each year, I get excited by the prospect of the day that Major League Baseball’s pitchers and catchers report to Spring training but, alas, there is a solid chance that baseball will be disrupted or worst-case, non-existent in 2022. Let’s Go Mets!
So, let’s all say an enthusiastic good riddance to 2021 and dig down deep to find hope for 2022. I count my blessings everyday for my family, friends, and resources, and I think about and feel for all of those people who don’t have that support. Don’t forget about these people — they are all around us, and if 2022 turns out to be another crappy year, doing something good for those in need will help you get through it. Be safe! Stay healthy! Have a Happy New Year!
I’m not accepting advertising on this blog or my other blog, One Voice for Reason. I hope that if you appreciate my efforts, you’ll buy me a coffee through my ko-fi account. Simple and safe, any small contribution helps me offset the cost of hosting, etc. And it’s all virtual so we’re automatically social distancing!