THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: Lessons I Learned About Happiness as a Disability Parent

My husband and I were alone with the doctor in the hospital playroom when she gave us the news about our six month-old baby son. “Never be normal” are the words I recall. I also remember “generalized cerebral atrophy.” I felt a strange, out of body sensation as time and space narrowed to a pinpoint. ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: The ABCs of Making a Will Online

Today, I’m pleased to host this guest post by Sarah Smith, not least because I know how important it is to have a will if you are a disability parent, but also if you care for an elder. Everyone needs a will. Sarah is a small business owner, and is currently learning about marketing, using the ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: On Embracing Change

We’re moving. Today. Four strong men pulled up in an enormous truck this morning and right now I can hear them talking quietly and gasping as they haul sofas and tables down the hall. We bought this house in 1991 just before Natalie was born. Nicholas’ main floor bedroom and wheel-in shower made this an ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: BREAKING THE BOUNDARIES OF COMPLEX CARE FOR CHILDREN

Breaking the Boundaries of Complex Care for Children Complex care is a real interest of mine. We gave complex care at home to our son for 23 years and now his care is delivered by one to one nurses at a nearby care home. My Mom’s care is becoming increasingly complex – she is 94 ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: BREAKING THE BOUNDARIES OF COMPLEX CARE FOR CHILDREN

Breaking the Boundaries of Complex Care for Children Complex care is a real interest of mine. We gave complex care at home to our son for 23 years and now his care is delivered by one to one nurses at a nearby care home. My Mom’s care is becoming increasingly complex – she is 94 ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: When a Couple at McDonald’s Said I Shouldn’t Feed My Son in Public

I am fortunate to write for the marvellous site, The Mighty.  Here’s my latest post for the good folks there – and if you feel like a daily dose of good news, subscribe to the feed.  You won’t regret it!  In 1993, we were living in London. My husband’s diplomatic career made us fearless about ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: A Caregiving Story: The Fonseca Family

                   Q: Tell us about yourself and your family. We are the Fonseca family – Dad is Joe, Mom is Christine, and our son is Ethan.  We are high school teachers and Ethan is 12 years old, in grade 7.  Our family used to include 3 beloved ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: I Bloom Where I am Planted: A Story of Family Caregiving

November is National Family Caregiver Month.  Here in the Caregivers’ Living Room, we are celebrating by publishing your stories.  If you have a story to share, please send it to me at donna4walls@gmail.com.  Let’s celebrate our lived experience by storytelling! My name is Susan Buro Hamm.   Included in my family is my hunky husband ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: Setting Roles, Boundaries and Limits in Mothering a Complex Child

One day a few months ago, fellow disability Mom and writer Jennifer Johannesen sat down with me for a chat.  (I highly recommend Jennifer’s book and her blog– they are at the top of my favourites list.)  In a previously published portion of our chat, I introduced Nicholas and our family life. Here, I discuss ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: Am I a Therapist or a Mom? Can I Be Good at Both?

Am I a therapist or am I a Mom?   How can I rate myself well in one role without failing at the other? In my continuing conversation with Jennifer Johannesen, author of “No Ordinary Boy”, I talk about trying to balance therapy and parenting roles.  I muse about how the expectations of therapists combined ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: Regrets and Triumphs in Mothering a Complex Son: A Video Conversation

Recently, I had the privilege of sitting down for a chat with my friend and colleague in disability activism, Jennifer Johannesen.  Jennifer is a blogger and the author of “No Ordinary Boy: The Life and Death of Owen Turney”, a riveting memoir of life with her son Owen whose medical challenges sadly, eventually claimed his ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM - A Blog by Donna Thomson: Fathers, Dads, Papas, Grandfathers

Today is Father’s Day.  In the realm of disability and family, we talk most often about mothers.  But today, I would like to say a few words about what it means to appreciate the Dads in our lives. My own father, James Edward Thomson, was a gentle, kind and funny man who was much loved ...