Saturday, February 27, 2016

Tribute and Admonition to Caregivers

I can't imagine being a single mom and caring for our son. I know there are so many out there who are in this situation. I'm so thankful that God gave me a husband who would be a caregiver with me for Trenton. I know many husbands out there would not be able to handle what he has handled. When Trenton was first born, I couldn't bring myself to measure medicine. He was a pharmacy technician at the time, and he willingly took care of it. Thankfully, God has helped me through that fear of doing it wrong. With tube feeding, we feed Trenton several times during the day, and my husband has fed him so many of those times. It can be stressful. It was especially stressful one year of Trenton's life, and my husband gave up so much to relieve me of the fear I had of what could happen when Trenton would eat. During the sleep deprivation times, he lets me sleep. He is a wonderful caregiver and husband.

As a caregiver who has others who share the responsibilities, it's easy to forget or take advantage of the other person on your "team". For me, I get used to my husband helping me, and I can take it for granted. This is something that is so harmful in a family.

In some families, there are many siblings and a parent or parents who need help. Sometimes it all gets laid on one person. It could be that person is easily pushed, or maybe it is that the other siblings are afraid to help. They might fear what could happen while they are helping. It's easy to have these fears, but it's important to take our responsibilities God gives seriously. God calls us to honor our parents and love others. Being a caregiver is tough, and the brunt of it should never be left on the shoulders of one if there are more who are physically able to help. That is not loving that person or showing love to the parents, and in the end there will be regrets.

As caregivers, let's try to remember that it's God who put us where we are, and it's not easy, but He is so often merciful in our daily situation, and everyday He offers the grace that we need to get through the day.

If you feel alone or neglected and you need help, ask for it. If others who should be responsible are not, talk to them. Do not hold in the anger that can build and turn into bitterness and even physical sickness for you. Lovingly ask them to help. If they do not respond correctly, pray for them, and ask God to give you patience and hope as you are the sole caregiver.

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