Posted by & filed under blog, Caregivers, Emotional Support.

This past week has been one of the toughest weeks of Lindsey Beres, the Founder of Bent But Not Broken’s (BBNB) life.

Mr. Sebastian, Lindsey’s trusted feline companion of 11 years, started to be reclusive, sat facing the wall, not eating, and vomiting green liquids. With the special bond they had, she immediately knew that something was wrong and took him to the vet that day. Only problem was, it was Christmas Eve and any blood work wouldn’t be back in the next 48 hours, thus leaving them without answers.

NOTE: The reason why Lindsey is such a do-er, is because she is a machine. She sees a problem, gathers information to make the best plan to solve it, and then works hard. Only problem is that physically, Mr. Sebastian was exhibiting many terrible signs, but knowledge wise, she had no idea what the actual problem was so treatment was in question. They didn’t know what to treat!

Today, Dec 27th, Mr. Sebastian made it through the night. Lindsey hasn’t slept in days and has been taking his temperature every hour. It has gotten up to 105 and 107 when felines are supposed to be 100.5 to 102.5. This is dangerous because as Dr. Casey says, it is a huge stress on his little body that hasn’t eaten in 5 days and could cause permanent brain damage =(

Mr Sebastian

HELPLESSNESS:  Often times caregivers feel the emptiness of helplessness. They want so bad to just fix their loved ones problems and take their pain away. The care givers of care and they don’t know what they can do to take the pain and suffering away. I can’t imagine what it was like for Nancy (Lindsey’s caregiver and mom) watching her 19 year old daughter fight to finish college and accomplish tasks she usually did with vigor because she ill. It is a lot like Lindsey and Mr. Sebastian right now. He is only 11 years and most cats live 15-20 years. He is fighting to keep his head up when he usually runs around with excitement.

SADNESS: Mr Sebastian has been with Lindsey throughout everything. He is her silent confidant. Keeping all her secretes and always listening. Having his special food, perch in the sunlight, and the whole bed if he wanted it, leaving her only a small corner. He lays with her when she doesn’t feel well fighting CFIDS disease…he has lasted though out all the boyfriends, friends, and ups and downs in moods and weight…She has gone into debt when he gets sick with vet bills, sacrificed vacation trips because there was no one to watch him, and even evicted a room mate for letting Sebastian outdoors leading to a THREE MONTH adventure!  He is Mr. Sebastian and the overwhelming sadness has taken this patient of CFIDS and made her a caregiver.

WHY WE CHOOSE TO SUPPORT CAREGIVERS TOO: Caregivers are amazingly strong and loyal people in patients lives, and they are the reason why they have been included in Bent But Not Broken. They deserve the support and love of others as well. The deserve to know that there is a support system out there for them and people who care about their well being and filling them up after they have dumped everything into their patient.  We love, respect, and appreciate our caregivers and there are not words enough that could ever express the patience gratitude or what they mean to all patients around the world.

If you were moved by this true story, we would love for you to donate to Bent But Not Broken. Even if it is only $5.00 it will help our mission to help caregivers and patients.

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4 Responses to “When The CFIDS/CFS/ME Patient Becomes The Caregiver”

  1. Lynn M. Chiodo (Lynn Bobo)

    Our pets play a huge role in the daily life and routines that we have. If we live alone, which is where I unexpectedly find myself after a divorce at the age of 50, finding a reason to keep on “keeping on” can get a bit tougher. Lindsey has had her own struggles and her pet, Sebastian would always be the one she could count on to be there for her in good times and in bad times. Our pets can make us realize that Every Day is a new beginning…no matter what happened the day before. It would be heartbreaking to be w/o the love, humor and comfort of the pets in our lives. Right now, I know that Sebastian has improved and is home with Lindsey. I know her heart is filled with joy over his making it through some very touch and go moments. I’m glad Lindsey gave it everything she had and her cat did, too. They still have plenty of adventures to share together! Fingers crossed that recovery from her on out will be mostly uphill and almost no back slides. <3 Sending all my love to my 2nd cousin and her feline!! Go Sebastian :)))

    Reply
  2. Angel

    Great site and I came across it randomly and I am divorced and sick and caring for my sick child. I love animals and pets also and thought this was a nice article. You are such a positive person who seems to work hard and it’s great you share personal struggles as well. My child’s father, my ex husband left us for a coworker at the hospital and it has been a struggle as I am sick and child has some medical issues as well and he refused to offer any support (even for the child he refused- his own blood) instead he desired his wealthy coworker who really isn’t much sadly (daddy’s money not her own) but regardless life goes on and caring for a pet or a child has its rough days sometimes but makes it worth it and motivates one at times. My ex left us and doesn’t even see child but instead is with his coworker now and it’s ok because no one needs a negative husband around who is not trying to be supportive or help find solutions or doctors or meds or work out together or find natural alternative methods. I think it’s great that you wrote about how some vacations you gave up simply cause no one to watch your pet etc and the realistic challenges of being sick (or not) when caring for another (pet or child really)

    Reply
    • bbnb

      Thank you for your comment Angel. You have an unfortunate situation with the ex, however I’m super happy you’ve found a positive aspect in all of it. You’re absolutely right about not needing such a negative force in your life! It doesn’t make any of the health complications disappear but surrounding yourself with positive people (and/or pets) can do wonders for your mental and emotional state. Feel lucky everyday for your child. You may be ill, but you’re still kickin! So make the most of your current situation…it won’t always be like this. Life always bring change… Sometimes we just have to wait a looooong time : )
      Bell well Angel!
      -Lindsey (BBNB Founder)

      Reply

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