everybody will be a caregiver to someone. a grandparent, a child, a spouse who has a longterm disability or illness. but who takes care of the caregiver? f2fb friend #111 lon kieffer has written a book, given countless talks, and touched people’s lives with one simple message: that someone who is a caregiver has to make sure to take care of themselves as well. he is the superhero defender of the caregiver.
when i caught up with him in his delaware paradise he shared with me the news about his radio show!
in my divorce agreement, there is a specific written provision that in the event that my ex-husband were to become mortally ill, i promise to become his primary caregiver. i know is something were to happen to my sons joseph or eastman, i’d be there every day. i have other people in my life who, were they to need my caregiving, i’d drop everything–even this project–to care for them. i was a secondary caregiver to my friends the eastmans in their final few years. and this project has taught me that one day i will be a caregiver to my father justin–and that day is approaching fast.
what about you?
lon works at a nursing home in delaware in order to keep in continued touch with the field of nursing which is, of course, the profession of caregivers. but he makes sure to walk down to the edge of his property and take his boat out on the nanicote river every evening after work. sometimes he fishes, sometimes he has dinner with other “river rats” along the way, sometimes he hosts parties on the water, and sometimes he just sits back with a cold one to let the troubles of the day wash away.
i caught some seaweed, a lure, and a log!
i first met lon when he was a caregiver at the nursing and rehab center my grandmother alyce stayed at. she adored him because he would sit with her and listen to her stories. sometimes people just want to be heard.
if you want to reach lon, if you’re a caregiver feeling a little stressed, he is happy to hear from you. find him on facebook either by searching for lon kieffer or defender of the caregiver. and you can also find him at http://www.lonkieffer.com/
next up, i visit grandma alyce and hear the story of how she and i met for the first time when i was in my early forties.