Strategies for Dealing with Major Life Changes
The tumor in her abdomen was so large, the doctors were bringing medical students into her room, Grey’s Anatomy style. One thing was clear, she was caught completely off guard by having major surgery, and that made her as uncomfortable as the six inch incision on her abdomen.
Transitions are part of life, sometimes so big, they launch us right out of our comfort zone like a rocket. From surprise surgeries, menopause, empty nesting, caring for aging parents and moving, many of us us will deal with one or more of these life-changing events.
While my surgery/recovery has been no picnic, it has however, gifted me with more life lessons than binge watching a week of Dr. Phil. In the end, it’s how we react to the unexpected changes that can change the trajectory of our lives.
Sooo with an abundance of time to reflect upon my life as I recovered, several things became abundantly clear to mua:
1. Family is everything. Be grateful for them and invest in your relationships.
2. Stop wasting precious time and energy worrying about things that matter NOT.
3. Create a healthy balance between work and family life.
4. Learn to say no and then let it go, darling.
5. Have both a will and a living will prepared before you go to the hospital.
I’ve learned so much from this surgery, that I’m going to be blogging about it in detail, covering subjects such as:
What to Pack in Your Hospital Bag for Surgery plus recovery tips.
While change is an inevitable part of living life on this beautiful planet, how we react to it, is key.
There are certain things that sooner or later, most of us will be forced to face in our lifetimes. Being proactive (as much as we can) can help reduce stress levels and provide peace of mind that we have some idea of what to do in case of emergency.
Changing roles with our parents is a sad and uncomfortable concept to wrap our minds around. According to the National Alliance for Caregiving, “About 34.2 million Americans have provided care to an adult age 50 or older in the last 12 months”.
While preparing ourselves emotionally is one thing, there are things we can do preemptively to help everyone with the transition.
When you begin to notice changes in your parents behavior that might be concerning, it’s time to begin the dialog and possibly take immediate action.
If you have siblings, have a discussion about options for the next step in your parent’s living location and care. Make a list of how each of you will contribute and help with the transition.
You’ll also want to talk with your parents about their preferences.
Depending upon their physical or mental status, there are many options for extending the amount of time your parents can remain in their own home, should this be their preference, and deemed safe.
Here are some helpful services:
Order food and grocery deliveries
Set up maid service
Order an alarm device to alert for falls.
Set up an in-home care giver to help them. Services are available for both medical and non-medical assistance, part time and full.
Here’s a link to a FREE Caregiver Prepare Guide from AARP.
If you’re not already living in hot flash city, we’ve got a house ready with your name on it plus an industrial sized air conditioning unit ~ you can thank us later.
There is a long list of symptoms that go hand-in-hand with the change of life.. You’ll want to research, read and prepare yourself for not just surviving but thriving through menopause.
Back in our grandmother’s day, it was a subject not to be discussed. Fortunately for us, there is now a wealth of info out there to help us navigate these often choppy waters.
Since this is such a “hot topic”, Life Coach Claire and I put together a Menopause Survival Facebook Live Series where we discuss the symptoms individually. We also provide tips on how to power through them like a warrior.
Now this is thankfully, one change you can schedule and plan for in advance. If you haven’t already done so, beef up that college savings account, you’re going to blow through it, baby.
When my babies flew the coop, I went through a two-year period where I felt utterly lost. My identity was “Mama” and I poured much love and energy into creating a loving home with home cooked meals. When they went off to college and the military, I didn’t know what to do with all my nurturing feelings and extra time.
Finally, I swam my way through the fog of sadness and started a new career in blogging. My hubby and I also started dating again (each other, get your minds out of the gutter ~ lol) which has been fun and romantic. We do weekend getaways, trying new hotels and exploring beautiful locations we’ve never seen.
Here are a few ideas to get you going:
Plan weekly date nights.
Take up a new hobby.
Join a new group, volunteer, start walking or hiking.
Encourage yourself to step outside your comfort zone.
Start your own online business or blog.
Here’s a FREE beginner’s guide to starting your own blog I Want to Blog should that be on your bucket list.
Throughout our marriage, we have moved every five years for my hubby’s career. In the beginning, it was difficult, but we are on move numero 6 and I’ve learned something wonderful with each new home/location.
Here are some of the ways I’ve met wonderful new friends:
Join an alumni group for your college (you’ll often find one just about everywhere).
Get active in your new community.
Drop off a basket of muffins with a note introducing your family, adding your names and phone numbers, to kickstart getting to know your new neighbors.
Take college class in something you’ve always wanted to learn.
Take group classes (yoga, Zumba) at a gym. Introduce yourself to someone new.
Finding our way through the challenges and sometimes, heartbreak of life changes, can leave us feeling helplessly lost without a compass. In these times, remember that you are not alone and there are many resources available to you, no matter what you are dealing with in your world. Don’t hesitate to seek information, help or support whenever needed.
What’s the biggest change you’ve had to face? This is a safe place to share.
Until next time, wishing you every happiness on your journey through life.
Jonet & Daisy Mae