A Nation of Caregivers
The Fourth is here again – Independence Day. A day to watch the parade with a kid on your shoulders, eat barbecue, take in fireworks and celebrate our American heritage.
And from where we sit here at CaringBridge, it’s a time to remember two things about being Americans.
First, We’re Generous
Americans have big hearts, plus loyalty and pride. We reach out to help victims of earthquakes, floods, tornados, wars and other disasters whenever and wherever people need us, no matter who they are.
- When Hurricane Sandy hit the Eastern seaboard last fall, help started arriving almost immediately. Armies of first responders, medical personnel and National Guardsmen swept in within days, ABC and NBC television quickly raised $40 million for relief efforts and millions more came from individual donors.
- The same thing happened after Oklahoma’s monster tornado in May. Relief arrived immediately from across the state and beyond, and organizations from the Red Cross to the Salvation Army coordinated meals, temporary housing and cash donations for the thousands of people left homeless and hungry.
As our soldiers say, “we got your six” no matter what. “Six” refers to your back (the six o’clock position), and it means we look out for each other – always.
Second, We’re a Nation of Caregivers
The caregiving we provide for loved ones and friends is almost as American as the Stars & Stripes. Consider:
- In a typical year, over 65 million Americans – one in three adults ages 25-54 – spend an average of 20 hours every week caring for a family member or friend who’s ill, disabled or aged.
- The average caregiver for someone 50 or older spends $5,531 out of pocket on caregiving expenses every year. And like most caregivers, they ask for nothing in return.
We Celebrate You Today
Caregiving isn’t easy. It’s long hours. It can be stressful and emotional. There are no parades or fireworks. And admit it, sometimes you’d rather be doing anything other than grocery shopping, refilling prescriptions, untangling paperwork and massaging feet.
But instead, day after day, you choose to step up for someone you love. And it’s an honor.
That’s why all of us at CaringBridge think that you – and everything you do – is awesome. And that’s why, whenever a CaringBridge Site makes someone’s life easier, we’re happy to know that in our own small way…we got your six.
Today, How Do You Feel About Being an American Caregiver?
Or, what do you want to say about the person who’s caring for you? Please share your thoughts, opinions or advice with CaringBridge readers now.
Sources: National Alliance for Caregiving , AARP.