Today, I dropped my husband off at the VA Clinic for his weekly memory loss support group. He's been attending this for over a year, each Tuesday. He likes to complain about having to go, and who hogs the conversation, and who is too loud, and who always arrives late...but he won't miss it if he can help it. He doesn't think it's really helping him so much, but it's "good for the others" to have someplace where they can meet and discuss their various issues. Some have memory loss due to disease, some due to accidents, some due to stroke or hemorrhage. But the camaraderie is valuable. It helps to know you're not the only one.
And so, today, we had our first meeting for caregivers. Just the caregivers of these particular patients, just so we can keep it real and keep it "in the family." We're going to meet once a month.
There's a Starbucks nearby, and we set up our little group at a small table. We will get bigger, I'm sure, but three is a great place to start. We shared our stories...the story of discovery, and the story of the event, and the story of the trauma. And, even though our guys (It's only ladies in "our group" so far) are each suffering from different things, there's much to share and much to have in common.
I'm looking forward to walking alongside these ladies as they walk alongside their husbands. I'm proud to know them and to be able to be in their company. They are amazing, strong, resilient women.