‘A Book and a Cup of Tea’

Reflections from Sophie on Carolyn Main’s Self-Care Wisdom 

On Saturday, May 25, at the Spring Lifetime Member’s Luncheon, Carolyn Main, Kirsteen Main’s mother, gave a powerful presentation about self-care for the caregiver. Carolyn pointed out how PLAN families often face lifelong caregiving challenges unique to each of their needs that lead to a particular depth of fatigue. 

As I listened to Carolyn talk and watched parents and members respond, I was reminded of how important straight talk can be. Carolyn used language around death, dying, disabilities and caregiving that packed a punch. It isn’t until one finds oneself in a room of people who have had similar experiences that these truths can have a powerful effect.

I witnessed parents, Reps, lifetime members and siblings all have very frank and honest conversations about the truth of the challenges they face. I learned that when someone asks an honest question with courage, it is often met with the same honesty in response. This reminded me of how PLAN families came together at the beginning and how you still come together, with honesty.

Carolyn spoke of her fiercely protected self-care strategy; a book and cup of tea. When the challenges mounted around her as a young parent and when they still do today, she makes space for this simple act that is solely for her.

May every PLAN family member, Rep, sibling, network member find their own self-care acts. When you have an act of self-care that is for you alone, however simple or small, you are refilling that well that nourishes a family and courageous community.

Let’s share more of these self-care gems, there was a long list that folks shared at the meeting, let’s hear about your ‘book and a cup of tea’. Please feel free to send me an email at syendole@plan.ca with your ideas, no idea or email is too small!