Let’s Talk About Compassion
COMPASSION is: Showing how you feel by providing care, comfort, and sympathy for others. Your actions display your feelings.
Speaking for myself, I agree that words like kind, caring, and compassionate are applicable descriptions of how care and assistance should be provided. But, I also know for a fact that they are not always applicable to how care and assistance is actually being provided.
Caregiving is provided for many reasons: Sometimes caregiving is truly motivated by genuine care and compassion. It may be a job requirement. Caregiving may also be a personal obligation such as caring for a family member. As a job, the caregiver is being compensated monetarily, as a personal obligation the compensation is personal.
Regardless of the reason why the care is being provided we (being in wheelchairs) need to be thankful and appreciative of the fact that assistance is, in fact, being provided.
I don’t know about you, but I know for me it’s impossible to always be sweet, soft spoken, patient and gentle when care is being provided. Then add to that the need to be submissive as to how the care is being administered. Yes you should always be respectful, gentle, patient, appreciate etc. . . but being realistic I don’t think that’s humanly possible. At least for me it is not.
Nobody is perfect. I’d like to be and I wish I was, but . . .
Allowing myself to maintain some level of dignity and self respect requires me to speak up for myself. If I don’t no one will. And no-one else can possibly know what it is that I need without my communicating.
If I’m not comfortable, if something needs to adjusting, be it my left arm or my right foot only I can know that. I do however need to be respectful and patient when communicating. In volume, tone and word choice.
I know I’m not alway kind and gentle when I communicate. And being borderline OCD doesn’t help any. I am frequently accused of being too picky and requiring to much.
We (the wheelchair confined) need to always be respectful of our caregivers. Always remembering how much we need them and how thankful we need to be for having them in our lives.
We’d be lost without them.