I am the kind of person who likes to organize and plan for events in my life. I like to know where I am going and plan for all possible scenarios. I also don’t like a lot of changes. As a caregiver for my husband for four and one half years I was not allowed that luxury. There was continual changes in my husband’s health, and most of these changes were downward.
These downward changes in my husband’s condition were very discouraging to me. How I longed for things to be “normal” in our household. From the beginning, however, I sensed that there was divine purpose in all we were experiencing. I sensed that I had spiritual lessons to learn through the caregiving experience.
For one thing my experiences as a caregiver for my husband revealed to me things that were not right about me yet. They revealed my tendency to be impatient and to worry about the future. The difficulties of caregiving tended to draw me closer to God and thus made me more aware of these imperfections and sins in my character. This more profound awareness of these things in my life and God revealing these things to me actually were a method God was using to show His love to me as His child. God was trying to develop more Godly character in me.
My caregiving experiences were difficult and heartbreaking, but they were not without purpose. Besides helping me realize things that needed refining and correcting in my character they made me draw closer to God. They also made me realize I needed to rely on Him entirely, if I wanted to be strong to do the things I needed to do as my husband’s caregiver. Self-reliance and thinking I could do it myself had to go out the window. There had to be a total surrender to God. I certainly did not come close to totally doing all this perfectly, but I certainly was made aware of these things.
There was also purpose for my husband, as his body declined in its ability to function as it should. I can not speak for him as to the exact spiritual lessons he learned. However, my husband taught me one important thing through his example. He never said, “Why me?’ throughout his whole experience. That in itself was part of his purpose trapped as he was in his body especially the last months and years of his life.
Dear caregiver, believe there is purpose for the difficulties you are experiencing as a caregiver. Search for these purposes and lessons. Also believe with all your heart that your loved one for whom you are providing care has a wonderful purpose for being on this earth.