Thursday, 31 December 2015

Receiving is, for Some, More Challenging than Giving

     We health-care providers are doers, givers, fixers. We're notoriously poor at self-reflection. We don't recognize or don't do enough about the fact that we ourselves require rest, a balanced life, and care. Many of us don't even have the vocabulary to think about these matters, much less discuss them. The whole are makes us feel viscerally uncomfortable. A window into our world:

     “How to let love in is an archetypal theme. It becomes an urgent call when any of us – deeply attached to our independence – need to be cared for by others. We may deny others the gift of their generosity because we aren’t comfortable with receiving or because we feel that we don’t deserve it. In Hob’s case, expressions of love from his family in his early years had been painfully missing; he survived by becoming independent, sometimes stubbornly counter-dependent. Then he was a therapist and teacher, always giving to others. With his illness, the equation turned upside down; now he had to let the love in. He recognized the challenge.”

       Olivia Ames Hoblitzelle. “Ten Thousand Joys & Ten Thousand Sorrows. A Couple’s Journey through Alzheimer’s.” Penguin, NY, 2008. 

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