Mom is not eating much these days. When we go out for lunch she eats a few bites and I finish hers and mine. “Waste not, want not”, you know. Consequently, I have gained enough weight to make it difficult to button and, in some cases, zip my pants. I decided to go on the cabbage soup diet as outlined on www.cabbage-soup-diet.com rather than shop for a new wardrobe.
I gathered the ingredients: cabbage, scallions, parsley, carrots, celery, tomatoes and green peppers. All wonderful vegetables, I knew I would enjoy. I sauteed the onions in a little olive oil and added the rest of the coarsely chopped vegetables and 2 cans of petite diced tomatoes.After having cabbage soup for three meals a day, three days, I couldn’t take the monotony any more. I gave up. When Mom goes home, I will cut back the calories and hopefully, be able to wear some of my favorite pants again. I pureed the remaining soup and froze it to use in spaghetti sauce.Mom likes variety, too. We all need to spice things up in our life, whether it is trying new foods or activities. Doing the same thing day after day leads to depression. Caregiving can be extremely repetitive taking one down the road to pure boredom–watching the same TV programs, going down the same roads, bath time, meal time, snack time and bedtime.
We have to be creative. For the mental health of ourselves, the caregivers, as well as the one we care for each day. Mom enjoys being busy and doing things that feel worthwhile to her. She unloads the silverware and sorts it into the tray. Folding small items helps me and keeps her engaged in the activities she has done all her life. Great-grandchildren and grandchildren, definitely, add spice to her day. Family and friends are such a blessing in an older persons day. They transport them into the present with joy overflowing. Mom and Olivia giggled as they “made” cookies. Olivia got excited about the sugar she was suppose to be rolling the cookies in. Most went on her tongue, I believe. Only those who love her ate the cookies.
New technology brings friends to life though miles apart. Billy and Paula Kimbrough sang in Chumuckla Community Church and Victor Campbell, my cousin, filmed them, www.me3tv.org. Mom moved and grooved to the music. Better than anything we could ever find on TV!