If you cup your ear and lean toward the west, you will hear a big ruckus coming from California. If you lean a little further, you will hear some squeals of surprise and pleasure coming from the Southland. If you lean even further and perhaps nearly tip over your chair, you will hear my tiny yet inexhaustible voice nearly shouting with happiness.
You see, I just received word from Caregifted that I am going to Victoria, British Columbia for a seven-day all-expenses paid trip of rest and relaxation.
What more can I say? Heather McHugh, the esteemed poet who also received a MacArthur genius grant, founded Caregifted as a non-profit organization that aims to bring respite in the form of all-expense paid getaways to full-time life-long caregivers of severely disabled family members. When I applied for the respite week and wrote about my life and history caring for Sophie, I told them that after nearly eighteen years, a week-long respite specifically awarded for long-time caregivers seemed more like a dream than a reality.