Advocates Advocating Christine Thelker © 2020 Dementia Event For This I Am Grateful Good Grief Living well with Dementia Silver Linings Stress

Welcome to December 2021

December 1st, 2021, first day in weeks that I have woke and actually been pain free. That being said, I have been noticeably missing from many things and interactions, missed meetings, missed events, missed social conversations, many days its been too much to navigate through the pain to try to manage participating a lot of things, and even though most of them are on line, its still difficult to be present when pain is overtaking you, and laying flat is the only relief. This is those components of dementia that few understand, all the physical challenges. However, I did with great effort, manage a couple things the last few days, one per day, thats all I could do, but this morning, I actually feel almost human, I’ve managed a walk. these simple things don’t seem like much until to manage them takes everything you have in you, so Im grateful that today I feel a little better, maybe, hopefully, another run of doing and managing ok. Although maybe to many its small thing to me it’s everything and so much to be grateful for. A little thing people don’t know about me is that every morning when I wake up the first thing I do is look up and say Thank you, knowing I am being blessed with another day.

We have as everyone knows been experiencing devastating events here in BC, its been a hard year here for many and it is a wake up call for us all and as we go into the holiday season, I do hope we all think about whats really important, about how we can adapt our lives to help with climate change, because each small piece makes a collective large difference. I’ve also been hearing everyone be so excited about how unusually warm it is for December 1st. it is 17 degrees Celsius, 62 degrees Fahrenheit here today, the average temperatures should be where I live ranging from 0 to -6 Celsius or 22 to 32 Fahrenheit, many are jumping up and down, saying it could stay like this all winter, but I think we should all be thinking about what that is implying. We already have had our highways, railways lost to floods and washouts, thousands out of their homes. Have you stopped to think about how this warm weather is going to effect things going forward, we already have supply chain issues, costs of food becoming more than most can manage. We have had our farms and crops wiped out it will take years to recover, that means the things we usually are supplied by them in the spring we won’t have, or we will be paying a lot more for them to come from other places. We already have the ground saturated, unable to handle the huge amounts of rain, the snow pack is melting, which we need for spring and summer or we will again be faced with more natural disasters of more fires. I am not wanting this unusually warm weather, I am not looking forward to what it may mean, if we get lots of snow and cold on top of unstable ground more slides, more avalanches. I think often we say we want something without giving thought to what it really means. The old saying of ” be careful of what you wish for”, may actually have more to it than what many realize.

No I am not living in the doom and gloom world, I am however living in a world, where I believe I need to be informed, updated so that I know what I can do to help myself get through the coming time, as well as help others and so that I may try my best to not put added burden onto a system that needs us all to be proactive. Whether it is the pandemic or climate change, whether we want to think globally or closer to home, each and every one of us have a role to play. It is not a matter of thinking that somebody should do something, we all need to do something. I don’t believe we have time to wait, I believe we must all do our parts no matter how small. I believe we need to start treating our earth as the gift it is and all that it provides for us, we need to start treating each other as respectfully as we think we should be treated, not just those we think we should treat a certain way. We have placed far too much emphasis on what we have, so called status, e instead of who you are at the core.

A quote by Barack Obama says it well : ” Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”
another quote that comes to mind is by Margaret Mead ” Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

As my province works to get through the devastation that it has felt this year, and the uncertainty of what the rest of the week will bring, I hope we can think about not being upset that we may not have access to all the things we think we want and need, and be grateful instead of what we do have. Can you get through a Christmas without a bunch of shiny expensive things under the tree, and still be grateful, and still feel blessed, and still enjoy the season. Or will you fall into that “its not fair state”, will you be upset that Christmas Dinner may not be Turkey, or thankful that you have a warm home and food on the table?

We can all choose to be miserable about things or to decide to embrace things and as another old saying goes ” make the best of a bad situation”, look forward, quit saying I wish things would go back to before this or that, things can never go back, we can take what was good from behind us and carry it forward, but forward is the only way and we each as individuals have to decide if we are going to go forward in a positive manner or negative one, and again how we decide to manage it impacts others, collectively we can make it better or worse.

I am of the hope most will chose to make new traditions, bring new meaning to things, cherish and remember all the good parts and that as the year winds down, we have all collectively decided to go forward in a positive manner that will not only help ourselves and our families, but help the world become a better place, the earth a healthier place. i know I have written some about some of these things before, but they are important to me, because even though I live with a progressive and terminal illness, I have much I hope to do and accomplish before I am done on this earth. I want the world to be a better place for all those who are just starting and are still to come. I want children to have hope, to look to their future and have it look bright.

As I am sitting here looking outside at the wind blowing and listening to our provincial updates, I hope you enjoy this first week of December, stay safe, do what you can. To my fellow British Columbia’s we are strong and proud in BC, we have and are being tested in ways none of us could have imagined, so this holiday season, lets all give each other a little more grace, compassion, patience, in all your daily coming and going. Let’s help each other.

By WWW.Chrissy's

I am an advocate for people with dementia in Canada and globally, having been diagnosed with younger onset dementia myself a few years ago.

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