Care-giving for a loved one with a terminal illness is at best emotionally and spiritually challenging. On January 28, 2009 in the middle of my care-giving days I wrote the following words:
“Today I had many feelings of frustration. Frustration at my husband’s disease. Frustration at my husband for not doing things I think he could do to fight off the speed of the progress of this disease. Mixed with these feelings was a little cabin fever again and feelings of guilt for having feelings of frustration.
Tonight I do feel better. I went to mid-week services in church. In this case what probably helped me the most, however, was talking with a couple ladies afterwords. Even though they are not going through the exact experiences I am going through, they seemed to be able to empathize with me on many levels. They also assured me of their prayers. The Lord does know whom to place in our paths when we need them. Thank you, Lord.”
In the frustrations of care-giving Christian caregivers need to run to the Lord God for strength and encouragement. God sometimes uses other people for that purpose also, however. Dear caregiver, do not be afraid to reach out to others for help and encouragement. Also remember to thank God for the people He brings into your path which are a source of encouragement.
Finally, there are those who will disappoint you because of their lack of concern and involvement. These people are often people you would think should be the ones who are most helpful in your loved one’s care, but they disappoint you in their lack of involvement and concern. Do not concentrate on the disappointments of these people’s actions and attitudes. Doing that will serve no purpose but to discourage you and bring you down emotionally. God also asks us to forgive those who are not there for us physically and emotionally when we need them. Rather thank God for those who do step up and help by their words, actions or prayers. They are truly a gift from God.