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Hidden Crevices

 Over the last week, as I cared for my son, I've thought about several things. Taking care of another whole person means getting to know them in more intimate ways than you could have ever imagined. Some pleasant, some not-so-pleasant ways. As I tended to Chris, I thought about how God tends to me. Of course, there are some things I'd rather not have to do - those unmentionables. But they must be done in order to provide proper care. I wonder if God minds getting intimate with the parts of our hearts that no one else will ever see. As I care for my son's broken body, it brings up compassion I didn't even know about. It had been lying dormant in my emotions and was spurred only by caregiving. I've learned more about patience, growth, and love than I ever imagined possible. And all of those have led me to a deeper understanding of how God cares for us. This morning, in my devotions, I found myself in Job 6. Job is in the middle of the darkest night of his soul. (I kno
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Raw and Real

 You know how raw and real you feel after not sleeping for three nights in a row? Yeah, I know many of you do! I'm sorry we understand one another and relate to some of the tougher issues caregivers face. Here it is, nearly Thanksgiving, and we're supposed  to be thankful. But wait - aren't we supposed to be thankful every day? Or has giving thanks become a day on our calendar?  I've been mostly up since 4 this morning, and it's looking like a long day ahead. But as I sat there watching my son's labored breathing, a lot of thoughts started going through my mind. Honestly, I wanted to have a pity party. I wanted to cancel my FaceBook live devotion "Peace Out" - because, for just a minute, I thought peace was missing. That's an easy thing to miss when emotions are raw and real in the moment. As I was contemplating how this day may roll out, wondering if we'd be headed to the hospital again or not, I pulled a David. In 1 Samuel 30, David was at on

But It Feels So Real!

  Last night was one of those long ones caregivers dread. Not only was I up with my son through the night, but I also wasn't feeling well either. Those nights and long days can also make us feel like there is no end in sight. Now that I am up and going (because I have no other choice, right?), I feel pretty good. Just a little tired, but I'm pretty sure I'm not going to die. Lol. During those long nights, we often feel so alone, so lost, so confused, and frustrated. There's a whole range of emotions that can run the gamut while you're up all night seeing to your loved one. Those long nights are often followed by days of exhaustion, concern, and wondering what's next. Tiredness lends itself to feelings of despair. And I'll be the first to tell you that it's a lot to try and fight off. But we do it over and over again. Am I right? This morning I spent my whole devotion in Philippians. I did my FaceBook Live about it too. (See video below!) Paul spent the w

Energizer Bunnies

  There's no doubt that caregiver burnout is real. But what are we supposed to do about it? I've read many posts about how to prevent it and how detrimental it can be. One of the best ways to avoid it is to take a break. To which I reply, yeah, right. Not only are many of us unable to take a break, but we are also on go 24/7. We don't get paid days off, no PTO, or paid leave. Vacation isn't even in our vocabularies. Right? We may get tired, worn out, worn down, fatigued, exhausted, and burned out - but we just keep going. Like the energizer bunny - we keep going and going and going, even to our own detriment sometimes. Most of the time, it's because we really don't have any other choice. Other times, we simply become comfortable with our discomfort. One morning, I woke up and wondered just how long it had been since I'd had a shower. That's when it's time to worry. Lol. All these thoughts, and many more, were running through my head. I was sorting o

The Help

I've spent a lot of time in Psalm 121 since the day it became my anchor while living in the ICU waiting room all those years ago. It was then that I realized the nurses and doctors were great - and doing a wonderful job, but they were not my help. I understood the only "help" I would get would be from the One who could sustain my soul.  This morning, I was reading Isaiah 41, and three times, God said through the prophet, I will help you. Three times is a good sign if you're into the numbers of things. Each time God promised to help - He prefaced it with Fear not. As I was reading, I thought, who is this talking to? Is it applicable to me? So I looked at where the discourse started in verse 8. God's speaking through the prophet Isaiah to His children. He calls out the Children of Israel, the descendants of Abraham. And there you go - that's us! We are the spiritual descendants of Abraham by faith. (Galatians 3:26-29) That gives me a free license to claim this p

Hectic Mornings

  First thing this morning, I dropped and broke my favorite coffee mug. Not a good start. Lol. I got it cleaned up, started the rug in the washer and grabbed a second favorite cup for my first cup of coffee. I sat and contemplated crying, but it wouldn't put my beloved cup back together. Wouldn't it be great if tears fixed things? I'll run that idea past God to see what He thinks. I have great ideas from time to time and I don't know why He doesn't jump on them! (Wink, wink!) I had already slept in a little, which was welcome since I don't seem to get good sleep much anymore. But it set my morning routine into chaos, and I'm still running behind. I need to get up earlier, but I've been working later at night to try and make the proverbial ends meet. I'm pretty sure I'd love a day to just sit in the recliner and sip tea and try to see air move. Or maybe a day out in the woods would do me good. Then, I think of this familiar verse. Trust in the Lor

If They Knew

 Overall, I think I'm a pretty positive person. I try to find something good in every situation. But some mornings, I'm just too tired. Caregivers can bring a whole new meaning to an entirely new level of tired. Am I right? If I'm honest, there are mornings when I get up, and I just don't want to do a FaceBook live devotion for everyone else. I really don't want to write this blog sometimes. Lol. I'll admit that most of the time, when I push through in an attempt to encourage others, I find encouragement for myself as well. Caregiving is very rewarding, but it can wear you out! Many times we don't have physical help, either. I can say, it's a good thing our help comes from the Lord! Psalm 121 has been a source of encouragement for me since I read it in the ICU waiting room during my 3-week stay. I lived there. I wrote a song out of Psalm 121 because my son's friend knew I was a musician, and he loaned me one of his old guitars. I lugged that thing ar