If you were to just read this quote from Maya Angelou you might not connect it to the challenges of aging. However, I read it and thought of the challenges of being a caregiver.
I was lucky with the challenges my Dad and I faced with my mother's Alzheimer's. We had round the clock care, so while the pain in our hearts was constant, we still had the opportunity for respite when needed.
As I read the piece below, I kept thinking of Alzheimer's and so many courageous people I've met through the Caregiver Support Group. I thought about the way they get knocked down by the challenges and keep getting back up, each time with a new level of courage to deal with the disease and care for a loved one.
"We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated. It may even be necessary to encounter the defeat, so that we can know who we are. So that we can see, oh, that happened, and I rose. I did get knocked down flat in front of the whole world, and I rose. I didn't run away - I rose right where I'd been knocked down. And then that's how you get to know yourself. You say, hmmm, I can get up! I have enough of life in me to make somebody jealous enough to want to knock me down. I have so much courage in me that I have the effrontery, the incredible gall to stand up. That's it."