Caregiving for a loved one is often challenging at best. Caregiving can also be heartbreaking and overwhelming, if one cares for a loved one who continues to take steps backwards in his or her health. As a caregiver for my husband with a devastating and fast moving neurological disease, I certainly found that to be true.
In January, 2010 I journaled the following words about my husband:
“How far we have come from him being our family’s primary breadwinner, my best friend, my lover, and my husband. He is still my husband, but how different our roles are now. How could our lives have gone from ‘normal’ to wheelchairs, incontinence products, and immobility in just a few years?
I resolved at the beginning of this year to look for the blessings and to also look for the faithfulness of my God in my life. I resolved not to stress so much. I am making a conscious effort to do this. I do see the blessings and faithfulness of my God. In spite of it not being a great day, I recognize blessings in my day even today. I really do, but these sad feelings still are there for what is no longer there.”
Dear Christian Caregiver, I am certain you experience many emotions of sadness and heartbreak also especially if you are caring for someone with a long term illness. So where can one run for help with these negative emotions?
The only source of strength and guidance in the challenges of life is the Lord God. We must spend time in His Word, the Bible; and we must spend time in prayer. This will begin to instill in us an understanding of the depth of God’s love for us. This is turn will provide us a peace that only the awareness of the Presence of God in our lives can provide.
As we begin to look for the wonders of God and the Presence of God which are all around us, we begin to realize that we are not abandoned or left alone in this world. Dear Christian Caregiver, your feelings may tell you that you are all alone. Daily remind yourself of God’s truth, however. Seek His companionship and counsel. He alone can guide you perfectly, as you navigate the often stormy waters of caregiving. God alone can comfort you completely, as you struggle with the negative emotions which offer accompany your caregiving days. The Lord God is sufficient, however. He is also greatly honored, dear Christian Caregiver, when you set your affection on Him in the midst of the heartbreak of caregiving.