The Lessons Of Life

Stress! Caregiver stress.

Taking care of yourself, meditate, even for five minutes. Listen to the music you love, journal, draw, play with colored crayons, Silly Putty, bang the drum or the pillow, putter in the dirt, buy yourself a flower pot, or a plant, make a collage of pictures as you would like your life to be. save quotes and read one every day, do anything you can for 5-15 minutes a day to restore yourself. If you can’t, then at night before you go to bed, think about a way to make tomorrow the day you can find a few minutes to get away. (even if it’s just in your own mind) Think about happy thought and places you’ve loved, people who have come into your life and made a difference.

See how easy it could be? Yeah, in your dreams. I wish for all caregivers the gift of the above. I hope someone comes into your life to give you some respite.

Someone in your own community to become your friend, to email you, to encourage you, to help take away your stress. That is my wish and yes, even my goal.

Adopt A Caregiver. Give the gift that lasts forever and costs nothing. See www.adoptacaregiver.org and do something for someone who needs you to be that friend. You can tell them that your friend Helene sent you.

Keep love and kisses in your life. Helene

Fibromyalgia And Chronic Fatigue

Most people have no clue what it’s like to have Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue. Went to the doctor today for my annual physical and realized I hurt all over. Any where he touched, it hurt. I am definitely in a flare up mode right now, brought on mostly by myself. The move, bending, packing, unpacking, putting thiings away, lifting heavy boxes of clothes, I thought by now it would be better. Instead it has gotten worse.

Having Fibromyalgia is like walking around all day with an all over ache, sometimes better, sometimes worse. On a bad day, it’s all I can do to get out of bed, but I do. My attitude is, it’s there, it’s always going to be there, so do what you have to do.

When I can’t do that, is when I have Chronic Fatigue. I am so tired, and brain fogged I can’t think straight, can’t concentrate, and I lose the day, or week, or month. Either you can’t sleep, or even when you do, you wake up exhausted and there isn’t a darn thing you can do about it.

I have been living this way for so many years that it’s part of me. It just is. I accept that, and I try to keep my spirits up. If I can’t do anything, I read, or take a nap, if I can. When I feel better I can get more done in one hour than I can in days. That’s just the way it is.

I’m thankful I am here. I am grateful for everything I have and can do. I’m grateful that my husband understands and gives me time and space and love.

I wish the medical profession would pay more attention to Fibromyalgia and find something to help with the pain. It is real, it hurts, it’s debilitating.

Thanks for listening.

Keep love and kisses in your life. Helene Moore

I Lost Tonight's Blog

I have no idea what I did, but I lost tonight’s blog.

I was writing about Journaling, and about tips for writing memoirs.

Let me see if I can reconstruct what I wrote, since I do not use notes.

Journaling. Just write whatever comes to mind, phrases, about your day, your goals, what you are grateful for, anything that comes into your mind.

Memoirs, also keep it simple. One of the easiest ways to start a memoir, is to write it as a letter.

Dear —-, Remember when we, or, I wanted to talk about the time, or, this is so hard to talk about that I thought I would write to you, or, the most traumatic time of my life was when.

Keep it simple. Another way of doing memoir is to write out simple phrases in 10 year increments in your life. Mine would read something like this:

10 years old: we moved away from family and friends, it was 1941 and the war had just started and my father needed a job.

20 years old. I got married….

By the time I was 30, I had three children.

At age 35, we went through a personal bankruptcy

by age 50, we had restarted and sold our business, and moved to N.Y.

Using mind maps, like the branches of a tree, or look online for Mind Maps, and fill them in. Just keep it simple. It’s an easy way to start.

Keep love and kisses in your life. Helene Moore

Author Signing Today

Cheesecake and Crime is supporting local authors and today I signed my book, Behind The Mask there. Thank you for the opportunity to speak;  and your cheesecake is delicious. I met some wonderful people  today. Thank you all for coming and  listening.

If I planted a seed about my adopt a caregiver program, I’m happy. Word of mouth is potent and adopt a caregiver is so important to me. Caregivers are caregivers, 24/7, not only for Alzheimer’s Disease but all others as well. And caregivers are men, women and children. Don’t forget the kids. They too, are having a hard time and think no one understands what they are going through. Usually they are right.

If my book does nothing else, at least I know it helps everyone to understand what a new caregiver is going through. And that we do understand.

I believe in early diagnosis, and I’ve been reading that more younger people are being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease. I also read there is about a 30% change since the early 2000’s if I can understand the statistics I’ve read.

It’s so important to keep the brain young. Write in a journal, it’s like writing a letter. Start with,  Dear Self and then talk and talk and write it all out. That is what I did, and yes, it did help.

Play scrabble on line, or any other game, anything that makes you think. Keep your brain young. Exercise it in any way you can.

I hope that word of mouth comes to your neighborhood, and that you will support my adopt a caregiver program. It is well worth the effort of writing an email and saying, I’m thinking about you, and I’m listening.

Keep love and kisses in your life. Helene

Behind The Mask/Adopt A Caregiver

That is the subject of my speaking engagement tomorrow. I have no idea how many people will be attending, if any, but I am prepared to talk. My book, Behind the Mask is every new caregivers story, it just happens that I published it. It is still their story as well as it is mine. The every day up and down emotions are all on display. Since we had to keep our diagnosis a secret, I started a journal on my computerthat Howard could not see.

After they changed the diagnosis, seven long years later, I showed him my journal. It took me a few years to gather up my courage to do that. But I realized how lucky I was that he would be able to read it and know what I was talking about. That his mind was sharp. He loved it, said it was me and that I should publish this book.

After I held Behind The Mask iin my hands, I realized this book had a purpose.

And that is my adopt a caregiver program. Everywhere you go, at dinner, clubs, social events, doctor’s offices, community, wherever you are, there are caregivers. These people need a friend, someone to talk to. An email works, gives them something to look forward to.

Caregivers don’t want to be a burden, they don’t want to talk about it. They feel that no one understand what they are going through. Behind The Mask takes you on their journey. You can stand in their shoes and know how they feel, their loss, their anger, their love and the fact that the are willing to do this 24/7.

It is my understanding that support groups for caregivers is dwindling. I hope not. It is so important for caregivers to have an outlet. I suggest each and every caregiver buy a journal and a bright colored pen and start writing out their feelings. It does help. Sometimes I think it saved my life, when I didn’t want to burden my children with my thoughts.

Come back tomorrow,  and I will tell you the outcome of my talk.

Keep love and kisses in your life. Helene

Behind The Mask by Helene Moore

BookReview.com gave me a good review.  My book was reviewed by Rod Clark and says in the last paragraph the following:

“As the new century opens and more and more of us are living longer, diagnoses of Alzheimer’s, dementia, and similar ailments are becoming more and more common–and stories like Helene’s and Howard’s are something that many of us are familiar with. However, knowing of the problem and living with it are two very different things. Few of us would face such a trauma with this much strength and dignity, and still fewer would have the courage to write a book like this and share it with the world. Kudos to Helene and Howard, and good luck to them both.”

Behind The Mask is every new caregivers story, their emotions, how they cope, and try to live every day with a smile. They don’t want to talk about it or complain. “They don’t want to be a burden to anyone.

The purpose of my book never came to light until after it was published.  My vision is for everyone to adopt a caregiver and give them some support, a little friendship, and something to look forward to. A simple email will do. Please share this with others, and do adopt a caregiver.

One person can make a difference, with a little bit of help. I need your help.

Keep love and kisses in your life. Helene

Need to Adopt A Caregiver

Behind The Mask, is every caregiver’s story and now it is no longer a secret and the book is being read. People I know are coming up to me asking how they can adopt a caregiver. I would like all the caregiver associations to offer suggestions as comments on my blog. To help me to help them.

I have told people in my neighborhood to listen for new caregivers. I would like the caregiver group to contact me and give me some names that I personally can pass on to reliable people who want to participate in adopt a caregiver.

One day hopefully caregiver groups, doctors, nurses, hospices, high schools will contact me and we will get lists going. For those to need to be adopted, and those who want to adopt a caregiver. Just to write an email, to know someone can listen, offer a joke once in a while, just be there.

If anyone has information, or knows someone who needs a friend please contact me by email, and I will do the best I can finding someone to write to the caregiver. I know what it’s like for these people and as time goes by, their friends and family visits dwindle down to nothing. It’s very depressing, and hard work to be a caregiver. It’s a 24/7 job, a hard job watching someone you love, who looks the same, but is no longer the same.

The best advice ever given to me, “You have to live in their reality.”