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Living the Praxis for Care 

Being Patient with Myself During Times of Frustration

For about a month now, I've been in a battle with my insurance company. It looks like it's going to be a long battle. I'm tired and I'm frustrated that I have to use energy I don't have to defend myself about a mistake I didn't make.

It's during those times of frustration that I sometimes forget to be patient with myself so that I can be patient with Mom. One morning, shortly after having been on the phone with the insurance company, Mom was a little bit cranky about getting dressed.

It was nothing major, but at that moment, I wasn't my best self, and I started fussing at her. Immediately, I felt bad, so I stepped away for a few minutes and returned.

My crankiness had nothing to do with her, so it wasn't fair of me to vent it out onto her. I caught my breath, then apologized to her. I know her brain can't process an apology, but it's important for me to do it for myself.

After the moment passed and I forgave myself for not being patient with myself, I decided that I wouldn't let that foolishness interfere with my relationship with my Mom. I'm in a place where I'm really protective about my time with her because I don't know how much more I'm going to get.

She's 96 years old and she has a degenerative brain disorder, so I still have no idea where this is going to go or what turns we're going to experience in it. So I won't let someone else's actions interfere with enjoying the time that I do have.

It's important for me to give myself time and space to be angry about things about which I should be angry. Sometimes I forget to embrace my humanity because I'm so focused on making sure that she has the best life she can have despite the presence of this god-awful disease, Alzheimer's dementia.

I have to remember that I'm human and humans make mistakes. To give myself the same kind of care that I give to her. My encouragement to you this week is to be patient with yourself.

Be well until next time. 

Dr. Sheri.


Dr. Sheri L. Yarbrough is an author, caregiver, and founder of Praxis Senior Care-Giving Solutions, a consulting business that works with organizations to provide working family care-givers with practical and easily implemented strategies to help them manage their care journey.

View Dr. Yarbrough's weekly blog on all things caregiving from a caregiver's perspective.

Listen to Dr. Yarbrough's Podcast: Straight Talk for Giving-Care.


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