Caring is usually a close contact occupation. Long distance caring is harder to implement and maintain. But whatever the distance between the cared for and the care giver there has to be a means of access.
I was at a meeting that was important to me and I needed to retain some form of control and focus. I had notes with me and I concentrated hard throughout all the time I was there. When it was over I felt a sense of relief because it all went reasonably well. What I didn’t realise until later was that I was also showing signs of distress that I believed I had hidden well. Leaving the meeting I met up with some people and one of them looked at me – more than a glance – it was someone close to me, and she asked if I had been crying. I had not, but she rightly noticed that my eyes were red and watery (I didn’t know I had even got that emotional but evidently I had been closer to tears than I was willing to consciously acknowledge).
You see, I had allowed this person into my life and she was comfortable enough with our closeness to mention what she noticed and to inquire as to my well being. Without this close proximity it would have been like caring from the end of a pole vault, assisted by binoculars from across a paddy field – not the easiest situation to handle.
When somebody knows you, they recognise shifts in behaviour and can talk to you about them, touch you, comfort you or guide you to a safer place.
When this happened to me the other day I felt a sense of understanding and peace come from the care giver in my life at that moment. It made me reflect that sometimes I must lift up my anchor – that I have used to maroon myself on my private emotional island – and row closer to the bank that the care givers are standing on. It is when I begin to row that I notice that they are also pulling me in using the guide ropes attached to my bow.
I know I must be accessible to receive their care so I keep on moving towards them and we both come into each other’s view.