Tears In My Gumbo is Book One of the "In My Gumbo Series. It is a compilation of short stories depicting the joy, challenges and triumphs of the caregiving journey. A personal memoir depicting the author's story and the service she has provided for other caregivers, the book illustrates the ingredients needed for caregivers to maintain resilience and create a soul nurturing gumbo of care. Blended with generous doses of humor, practicality and healing, this story is meant to inform, educate and inspire not only the caregiver but all of those who care about the caregiver. The five steps of conscious caregiving are identified and weaved throughout this beautiful narrative. These steps inform the caregiver in a way that nothing else has.
The holidays can be the loneliest, most daunting and depressing time for anyone who has lost a loved one. Because this is a time for family, love and joy, the absence of a loved one can feel unbearable. This excerpt shows the power of transforming that pain by embracing the rituals and memories that you cherish.
Self Care, for many caregivers is easier said than done. It's always easier to make and keep "their" appointments, see to it that "their" needs are met and put other's needs ahead of self. In this excerpt, you see how Miss Yvonne's attitude shapes the quality and caliber of life she's intent on creating for herself. Perspective and Intention are essential in prioritizing and creating the life experience that best serves the caregiver.
November is National Family Caregiver's Month and the theme is Take Care to Give Care. Easier said then done, making yourself a priority while caregiving can sometimes be impossible. This excerpt reflects upon the caregiver who recognizes that self care indeed is, non negotiable. Think about the caregiver in your world as you read and experience a caregiver who knows that one must take care of self in order to give care.
This chapter reflects on the caregiving experience of Kelly and Melly, twins who made the decision long ago, what, where and by whom they wanted to be cared for. Sometimes, the "logical" person to provide the care is not the right person. It's important to think things through and make decisions based on what you "know" now, not what you hope will be different when the time comes.
During the course of my personal journey as a caregiver to my mom, recognizing the "Honor" in caregiving was at first, a challenge. Consumed with the "overwhelm" of it all, it was tough to see the forest for the trees. Over the years, I've come to recognize caring for my mother to be one of the greatest honors of my life. Many of my clients tend to recognize this for themselves, some sooner rather than later. Miss Yvonne was the person responsible for me getting it and embracing it. See how this excerpt resonates with you.
As I've worked with clients and reassessed my own caregiving experiences, I became clear that there were stages/steps of caregiving that no one seemed to be talking about. These five steps are the ones that I've observed most and felt compelled to coin. It is not a linear process and you may find yourself experiencing some phases more often than not and some you may not experience at all. Others tell me they don't recognize the steps during the process but do so after the journey has come to an end. #tearsinmygumbo
In a million years, I would not have imagined that this day, October 12th, my mother's 80th birthday and the official launch of my book, Tears In My Gumbo would coincide with National Gumbo Day! #nationalgumboday #tearsinmygumbo All I can say is WOW! I am blessed beyond measure. Thanks Mom!
After having endured one illness after another, mom's diagnosis of Stage 4 Breast Cancer seemed unbearable. The only recourse was to do what my mom always did in her birthday month,we planned a celebration. We all came together to celebrate my mom and we spent the entire weekend in the mountains doing just that. It was initially difficult to remember and carve out all of the details but my awesome editor, Cynthia Schoen was relentless in getting all the minutiae told about that weekend. It remains one of the most memorable and beautiful family gatherings we've ever had. I encourage all families to consider, celebrating your loved one while they're here to witness it.
When I completed the manuscript for my book, I then had to release it. Turn it over to friends, family and colleagues to get their thoughts and feedback. The person I was most nervous about approaching and getting a response from was the person I knew I wanted to have write the foreword for the book. My mentor, coach and Speaker Phenom and Extraordinaire, Cynthia James. She was in the midst of writing her own book and asking her to read and consider writing the foreword for my book was a lot to ask. As I braced myself for the "I'm sorry, it's not a good time" instead she said she could read my manuscript on an upcoming flight. I mailed the script and held my breath. Not only did she read the script, she immediately began penning the foreword. The day she arrived in NY, she sent the attached foreword. There was no discussion and none was needed. I was floored, honored and terrified. The foreword validated the manuscript. The book was real and I couldn't hide from that truth. Now, I had to make the book happen.
The journey of caregiving is all encompassing. It requires as much as you can give and then some. It can be the gift that keeps on giving or that thing that leaves you bone marrow exhausted. Being present and conscious can shift what you think and how you feel. I apparently did not learn all I needed to know in the 15 year journey of caring for my mother. Life had other ideas about how I would use those experiences garnered and start a business helping family caregivers.
Now that the book is done, the reviews are pouring in. I am grateful to have the support of colleagues and subject matter experts who believe in the message and insights provided in TIMG. 7 days until we launch. I am beyond ecstatic.
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish