I Am Here and Aware

What happened to our country? Unaware of my realm outside of caregiving, I am here and aware and occasionally take a peak at what is happening in our country.

I am here and aware of my #caregiving duties.

Caregiver for Mom and Dad I am here and aware.
Breakfast and Butter Smith with Mom and Dad

Caregiving is a selfless act that requires patience, compassion, and dedication. As a caregiver, I have had the privilege of caring for my parents, who need my help the most. All caregivers, whether their family members or clients, find it a rewarding experience to see the smile on their faces and the appreciation in their eyes, knowing that we positively impact their lives. I am here and aware, but I was unaware of what was happening outside my realm of caregiving.

However, caregiving has its challenges. It requires time management, prioritizing tasks, and handling stressful situations. Caregiving has taught me the importance of self-care and the value of seeking support from others. Despite the challenges, being a caregiver has filled my heart with joy and taught me lessons in empathy and gratitude that will stay with me forever.

Teaching in a Multiage Classroom

I have been taking care of my parents for four years after retiring in 2018. I taught generations of students, and just as caregiving, it filled my heart with joy and taught me lessons in empathy and gratitude. It served me well while taking care of my parents. 

The World Outside of Caregiving

I was deeply involved in caring for my parents, and several events have given me great pause lately. All I listened to was Rachel Maddow, Dad’s favorite news. As a long-distance caregiver, I cared for them and would come home and hear news from my husband. He listened to the late-night radio on his paper route. He has two jobs to help support us while I am caring for my parents in another state. I heard two different views of the world.

The first two years were uneventful until January 2020. Dad fractured his hip at age 92. Then while recovering at home, we had an electrical fire. We moved to an apartment. Mom and Dad decided to refurbish the house so they could live the rest of their lives at home.


Then Covid hit. I was involved in their care. We moved back to the house 4 months later. Travel was restricted during the lockdowns. You can imagine what I was going through and how I was feeling. We all have empathy for each other, and our experiences during the covid years affected us all differently. Dad developed a severe case of anxiety which increased my anxiety.

In May, when I went home, my husband was filling me in on all the news he was hearing since I couldn’t come up for air as I was drowning with my caregiving duties. He warned me to avoid giving the booster to my parents. Please don’t take the vaccine, he told me repeatedly. I am so grateful I listened to him. Currently, I am back home, and the world has changed. What happened to our country?

Chat GPT and AI

I decided to ask AI: “As an AI language model, I cannot comment on the situation of our country without specific information. However, I suggest you catch up on the news and current events by regularly reading reliable news sources that provide different perspectives. This will help you stay informed and form your own opinions on the current state of our country.” That was not the best advice. Later I found out the news was censoring information by omission. Little did I know it was a coordinated effort.

Writing and Sharing

I shared my publication on Twitter in 2022 and eventually moved to Substack. Caregiving and sharing my experiences have helped other caregivers. In 2022, I started a Chat room for caregivers after the one we had used folded. My experience in the classroom enhanced my computing skills. Four of us have been the core administrators of chatforcaregivers.com. 

Chat for Caregivers

Chat for Caregivers focuses on caregiving, not politics, the state of the world, or our country. Caregiving and caregivers have a place to gather information, support, and coping strategies. Our group provides access to resources and information that can help caregivers better understand their loved one’s conditions and learn how to give the best care possible. We are a source of validation and comfort, as caregivers can share struggles and feelings with others who understand and empathize with our experiences. I have shared how I coped with the events of 2020.

As I published on Twitter, I received unsolicited news updates. I have been using Twitter since 2009, and what was coming through shocked me! Twitter became my go-to platform for news. Sharing on our platform has raised caregivers’ awareness as they care for a loved one. So many have experienced losses and grief.

Now my husband and I are on the same page regarding world events and our country’s affairs. His radio show is no longer available because of censorship; now I know why. We are experiencing free speech on Twitter, and I am ever so grateful for that space. I have decided to get involved. I am a wife, a daughter, a mother, and a caregiver. Prayer is urgently needed.

The Sea Change in Politics

So much has been imposed on our society, especially in our schools. Our school district always struggled for money; now, it has 8 billion. However, I question where that money came from. I have also learned about corporate media, Transgenderism, SEL, and CRT. CRT was a test the students took in our district. Now CRT means something entirely different. AI condensed this for me, and I am aware of the transgender and WOKE ideology. I have heard that it is a very controversial app, and I have discovered why. This is the explanation I received for both transgenderism and WOKE ideology. As an educator, I am extremely distraught about the effect of all this on children.

“Woke” ideology refers to an awareness and understanding of societal issues related to systematic oppression and discrimination, such as racism, sexism, classism, and ableism. This ideology promotes social justice and challenges traditional power structures to bring about equality and create a more just society.

Transgenderism refers to the experience of not identifying with the gender assigned at birth. It is recognized as a valid and diverse identity within the larger LGBTQ+ community. Transgender individuals may identify as male, female, both, or neither and may choose to undergo a medical or social transition to live in alignment with their gender identity. Transgender individuals often face significant discrimination and marginalization in society, and the transgender rights movement seeks to promote their equality and fight against such discrimination.”

My Haven

Caregiver Caring for her Mother

Caregiving continues to be my haven. I pray for normalcy as I know it and pray for freedom. I taught in a conservative community 2 miles from my house. Our Republican governor has made a difference. Nevadans voted the Democrat governor out because of the lockdowns. We are hopeful but continue to pray for our constitutional republic, the United States of America. I have been dedicating my time to interacting with other caregivers and writing on Substack.

Chat For Caregivers: We want to provide a connection between caregivers who can help each other along their journey. Chats are scheduled during the day, and you may connect to one of our scheduled chats at 9am/6pm PST (Noon&9pm) EST.

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About desertturle

Anita Henson aka Winnie. A retired teacher, and caregiver for my loving parents, wife, and mother. Married to Greg "Tex" Henson.
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