Oct 302013

Spiritual Wellness  – the ultimate freedom.

I heard it said that wellness of body, mind and spirit is the ultimate freedom. As caregivers we can certainly agree how important physical wellness  and mental wellness are, but even if the former are lacking, having  spiritual wealth makes coping easier. It guides our actions and thoughts  and allows us to close our eyes, if even for a moment, to go into  spiritual retreats for harmony and balance.

Spiritual wellness is the glue that holds us together Chaplain (Capt.) Dwayne A. Jones 88th Air Base Wing chaplain

Spiritual well-being gives you a feeling of connection to something larger than yourself. Through it you find meaning in life and it allows you to keep life in  perspective. It makes it easier to deal with everyday life. Those who  have spiritual wellness more likely will have a positive attitude, eat a  proper diet, exercise, interact better with others and overall enjoy  the things  that build happiness.  As a caregiver that is especially  important because your attitude and well being nurtures not only you but  also the one you care for.

I agree with Capt. Jones who wrote: “You don’t have to be religious in order to be spiritual. Contrary to popular belief, I believe spiritual wellness supersedes any religious concept, except for God.”

If this is something you are interested in, you might consider developing a spiritual wellness plan which can include prayer, affirmations, meditation and a variety of  spiritual practices of your choice. You can offer those for everybody in  the household or do on your own. You also can invite others to come and  join you or practice on their own for the benefit of the caregiver and  the patient. We all have heard of the benefits of healing prayer.

Several years before my husband developed Alzheimer’s, I had joined a religious spiritual science center. There I acquired the spiritual gifts inventory I needed to cope with the stress of caring for him later.

If you feel that you could use some help in that department, and who doesn’t, I’d like to recommend a number of resources such as spiritual healers, Reiki, and spiritual retreats where you can get one on one support.

Many local bookstores have a large spiritual gift inventory, such as spiritual books, CDs, DVDs, jewelry-for-a-purpose, crystals,  fragrances, candles, and incense. I do, however, caution you about the  burning of candles and incense, as well as some fragrances. Many can and  will be more like pollutants. Please make sure that you use and diffuse  natural organic essential oils with a specialized air diffuser, not  heat based. I recommend you visit the essential oils page to read more  about the importance of the purity of healing essential oils. Knowing about this is even more important when family members already have a challenged immune system. So, please do not ignore this information but act in the interest of  greatest well being for everybody in your sphere of influence, but  especially in the home of a caregiver and the one who is being cared  for.

You can also go online and find this information.

One of my favorite spiritual sayings which has helped me during many stressful times is the serenity prayer:  God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;  courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.

There also is spiritual wealth in Henry Ward Beecher’s words: Life – God asks no man whether he will accept life. That is not the choice. You make it. The only choice is how.