Dear Caregiver, do you ever wonder what life will be like after your care-giving days are over? Today I am going to share a little about my life after my care-giving days. I hope it will be a blessing and encouragement to you.
It has been two years as of January 2nd since my husband's death. The last four and a half years of his life I was his caregiver. I witnessed his physical decline step by step during those years because of his incurable neurological disease. It was a very difficult time for me as his wife and caregiver.
So what happens after care-giving? Life after care-giving for me was a slow process of grieving my husband, Wayne, and processing all that transpired during those care-giving days. In some ways it is a process which I feel will be lifelong. Yet I am so thankful to God for the healing that has occurred. I still miss Wayne and have lonely moments almost every day, but new purpose has also come to my life. I have learned so very much from those care-giving days and during the days since Wayne's death. My faith in my Lord has deepened, and my relationship with Him has sweetened.
At the beginning of 2013 I begin to pray about a verse in the Bible which says God can do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine. (Ephesians 3:20) My desire was for more than just strength to get through the day but for so much more. Through no effort on my part a few weeks later I was approached to see if I would be willing to do an interview with an New York Times blog writer about my feelings and emotions during and after care-giving. This interview took place on February 7 with Judith Graham. Judith Graham's blog post based on this interview and another caregiver's interview was posted on March 7.
The day of the interview I was nervous before the interview. I had asked others to pray for me, however, and during the interview I felt quite calm. I was able to say much of what was on my heart. When I initially received this request to do the interview I was rather blown away with the “wow” factor of it all. Opportunities like this do not happen to me. It was certainly immeasurably more than I could imagine happening. The blog post based on this did not publish until a month later, however, so there were moments when I wondered if it was going to happen. When it did publish I was once again blown away by this opportunity that had been given to me. If this New York Times post or my small blog posts here helps even one caregiver, I am blessed.
If you want to read the post go to http://newoldage.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/07/after-the-caregiving-ends/ The post contains my story and that of another former caregiver. My story is about in the middle of the post.
Dear Caregiver, care-giving is emotionally and physically draining. You also may be afraid of what life will be like after care-giving. Trust Him to guide and direct your path for the future. Trust Him to comfort and strengthen you.