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Sometimes we have to encourage ourselves.

You did it! You are about to enter a new year. Take a moment to reflect on this past year. The role of a family caregiver may have entailed making choices and decisions regarding the care of your loved one and adjusting your lifestyle to ensure your loved one receives quality care. Some of you had to decide to quit your job, take early retirement, decrease your work schedule to part-time, put your degree on hold, move your loved one into your home, or place them into a nursing home. Some of you had to take time off from work secondary to your loved ones' multiple hospitalizations, falls in or outside of their home, and unsafe wandering behaviors. You may have experienced an illness or disability yourself. Ultimately, the decisions and choices you had to make were not easy and were made with intense thought and consideration. With the help of God, answered prayers, and the support of family and friends, YOU DID IT! You are more than a conqueror; you are a survivor and God's gift to the world.

Walk into 2023 with an attitude of empowerment of things to come, an expectation of victory, and hope for tomorrow. No more procrastinating. Take on an attitude of preparation. Empower yourself with the knowledge about available resources for you and your loved one. You will ask, seek, and accept help. You will take on the role of a caregivers' advocate and educate those family caregivers in your lives. You will inform your doctor, pastor, employer, and healthcare policymakers of your family caregiver’s role and make clear the support needed to assist you with your daily challenges and your caregiver’s journey. You will be good to yourself and trust your instincts. 2023 will be a year you are empowered with a sound foundation to make wiser choices and decisions that will bring forth a sense of balance.

The new year stands before you, like a chapter in a book waiting to be written. You can help write that story by setting goals. The book is called Opportunity, and its first chapter is New Year’s Day. Just as a new bloom spreads fragrance and freshness, may the new year add new beauty and freshness to your life. Go forth wholeheartedly with no fear and with lots of aspirations and dreams. Be encouraged to dream a new and big vision.

Please join us for our last monthly 45min “Let Talk “for the year, Thursday, December 15, 2022, at 7 pm. Topic: I am no longer a Caregiver. Now What? Facilitator Dr. Martha Sullivan. Clinical Specialties: Women, Families, Bereavement, Older Adults

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