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Caregiver Contest Finalist Howie: Joining Others on Their Journey

Aimee Sharp
Author | Shield HealthCare
07/13/18  12:16 PM PST
Joining Others

Howie H. is from Colorado, and was one of forty finalists chosen out of the over 1,000 entries to our “What Advice Would You Give to a Fellow Caregiver?” Contest. You can find our grand prize and runner up winners here.

What advice would you give a fellow caregiver?

The most challenging trait that any natural caregiver can have is the ability to “be.” We are all wired to want to fix issues and make those in need of care more comfortable and happy. I work at a nonprofit that serves families who have a child with a life-threatening medical condition, and the biggest lesson that I’ve learned is that sometimes you just need to “be.” Too often I try to come up with the right words to say or the thing that might make a family feel more comfortable, but what I’ve found at times to be the most powerful way to care for someone is to just show up and be there. Don’t worry about bringing the “right words” but rather be a friend, a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on.

A family in our program recently lost their son to cancer and I went to visit the mother and father at home shortly after their son’s celebration of life. The whole way there, I was stressing about what I could possibly say or do to help this families situation. Shortly after stepping foot into their living room and sitting with them on their couch, I quickly learned that there was nothing I could do, and that was okay. It was not my role to fix anything. Rather, I experience peace personally and through them by just being there. No agenda to fix anything, but rather to just walk alongside them through this really tough time.

Sometimes the best care we can give is joining others on their journey.

Click here to head to the contest home page and read more advice.

Finalists were selected by the Marketing Team at Shield HealthCare. Those finalists were submitted to a panel of independent judges who picked three grand prize winners and five runners up. The judges included: Sandra Mitchell, Award-winning KCAL 9 news anchor and breast cancer survivor, and the Landers family: actor and comedian David Landers (“Laverne & Shirley”) who is living with MS, his wife Kathy and his daughter Natalie (“The Middle”). Click here to learn more.


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