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

Zero Expectations

It seems as though 2022 decided that it was not or is not going quietly, you would think we would have learnt but it seems that 2020 and 2021, only left people feeling and deciding that they were going to do and have everything they feel they were jilted out of during the previous two years.

The pressure and expectations people put on themselves that they were doing this or having that or going here or there, only to have Mother Nature say otherwise, doesn’t seem to matter where you lived, Mother Nature created a nightmare of weather events that left people, who were already life tired from 2020&2021, exhausted, stranded, expectations of what and how they were going to do things disrupted Trains, planes, highways, it didn’t matter, people were not able to change Mother Natures plans. And if it wasn’t Mother Nature stirring things up it was supply issues, crazy high inflation. So many things out of our control.

Maybe a lot of the airlines/ airports/ trains/ highways people could have done better jobs, but we can’t blame them entirely, they cannot control Mother Nature, and when Mother Nature throws things into high gear it has an instant snowballing effect across the country and beyond, it’s a domino effect. It is not unlike living with dementia actually, and maybe that’s why so many of us living with Dementia live without the expectations others pile on themselves. We have already learnt that like the weather, dementia unleashes itself when and however it chooses, so we have become very adapt at plan B, because we know fully well putting an expectation that things will happen as we want them to will only lead to frustration for ourselves and those around us, because when the storm of dementia stirs things up, we have either had to learn to ride the wave, change gears, change plans, be swallowed up and drown in it or ride it. I no longer live with the expectation that anything will happen as planned, if it does great if not it’s ok. It’s a much simpler and easier way to navigate living with dementia, and has really helped me manage through the last few years and most especially this last year.

2022, appears to have been harder in many different ways for people, and as Christmas approached listening to so many who were determined to make it what it was pre2020, it seemed like an expectation that just the thought of was exhausting, others were deciding to opt out of a lot of things and do something different and simpler, they dropped the expectation bar down, and who and who did that bar ever get that high. Commercialism and consumerism, $$$$$, nothing else, and we bought into it for years, piling on bigger expectations every year, it was not and is not sustainable for most. Another gift of my dementia was that it forced me to opt out of all of that, not just at Christmas but all year long.

My brain is happier, it functions better, less stress = happier better brain days. I much prefer a nice coffee, visit and a chat than all the chaos that most pace themselves through for the holidays, well even if I wanted too my dementia would not manage it, I would pay a far to high of a price to even consider trying too. So I have no problem explaining to people what works for me, if it fits into a bit of their holiday time great if it doesn’t I don’t have any expectation on anyone or anything so I am still o.k. It’s a peaceful bliss, calming time. Which watching the chaos that was created by Mother Nature this Christmas, I am grateful that I along with my dementia had a peaceful and calm Christmas.

It is also a sad time for a lot of people yet somehow they still feel they have to try to meet expectations, do this, do that, be here or there. No one should ever do anything more than they can manage, over the years, and yes I had my years of it to, especially but not limited to women, they run themselves ragged because they think everyone expects ( I have come to dislike that word immensely), baking up a storm, up till after midnight to get stockings stuffed and under the tree, up at the break of dawn to get the Turkey in before everyone wakes, and then working all day for an elaborate dinner,, days and weeks of prep, run run run, go go go. Maybe it’s ok to rent a cabin and have an old fashioned Christmas, or stay home and have one.

Anyways I believe we are being forced to think and do different and I am not sure being in the last couple days of the year we have seen all it wants to show us, but I was paying attention, I get it, I am grateful that I have a little place to call home, that I am safe and warm and I have food. I spend this Christmas season in-quiet reflection, Thinking about people who are no longer with me, well not in the physical sense, I feel their spirits, I sense when they are here. I enjoy chatting with them, reminiscing, it’s peaceful, I allow tears and laughter to flow freely, as a memory hits.

Yes 2022 feels like it was harder in many many ways than 2020 or 2021, it has also left me feeling like going into 2023 without any expectations, just letting it unfold, will allow me to take each moment and what it offers. I have learnt that I am enough, that I am ok just as I am Dementia and all, I don’t have to meet any bars that are set, and I don’t have to set any, I can just be and that is enough.

I wish for each of you 2023 is kind, is gentle, that blessings abound for all. I hope you get to rest more, take time to breathe, take walks, take naps, days to do nothing and feel good about it. I hope you all find peace within in 2023 and that we all focus on helping each other, being kind to others, that in kindness we find love and love is what matters. May 2023 be this and more for each of you, and mostly that we all learn that we are enough, just as we are.

I want to Thank you all for your support and encouragement over this last year, for the lovely messages, emails, etc. I don’t know what will happen in 2023, but I hope to be able to continue sharing my journey with you and you with me. Each of You truly are another of the wonderful blessings that I have received with my dementia.

Happy New Year Everyone

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.

One reply on “Zero Expectations”

As always, I love reading your posts and your honesty about what you are going through. I too plan on being kinder to myself and others this year, like you.
Blessings for a wonderful year.



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