Skip to main content

The Unexpected

I'm an organized person, really. I like structure, a schedule, and to know what is happening next. Too bad caregiving doesn't accommodate that. Ever. Each day there are tons of certainties. Obviously, I will feed, dress, transfer, and care for my son. But there are all these other forces that interrupt my new normal.

This weekend it was the flu. Chris nor I had it - but my granddaughter tested positive for both A & B flu. Who does that, seriously? That and the cold weather caused me to cancel a race I had planned for me and Chris. When I signed up, the forecast was sunny and 54 - perfect for taking Chris to the race. But the high temperatures continued to drop throughout the week until it was cloudy and barely in the low 40s. Not good for those who are fragile. So I canceled. Again.

It's times like these that I feel the losses most. I feel inconsistent and that goes against every fiber of my being. In my heart, I am a pleaser and I cannot stand to let people down. However, I know that my role as caregiver causes these situations and there is nothing I can do about it. I start sinking into the abyss of loneliness and social isolation. But honestly, it's getting more comfortable there and that's what scares me.

I'm learning a lot about both worshipping and being a warrior. When the unexpected happens and the bottom falls out we can get swept away in so many lies. Some I deal with as a caregiver include:
  • you're not worth anybody's time
  • no one wants to hang out with you
  • you've got nothing to offer society
  • you were made to live on the bottom
  • you don't deserve a social life
Maybe it's just me - but the emotional struggles are real for caregivers. It may wear a little different voice and say words a bit differently, but caregiving can attack our identity. We get lost in caring for our loved one and literally lose ourselves. But there is hope. (You knew there would be!)

Paul asked the Christians at Colossae a question. It's not in the same context, but he says why as though living in the world...we are not of this world. We are citizens of heaven and our identity is in Him. And the good news is that it doesn't change in response to any circumstances. Caregiving doesn't change our identity - we are His and we are still hidden in Him. Nothing in time can change who we are in eternity.

Today, in the midst of my crazy thoughts- I will stop and thank Him for saving me. For calling me His own. And I will be thankful that I'm still His - and nothing, not even caregiving can take me out of His hand. I'll turn my thoughts to who HE thinks I am and I'll remind myself that He is consistent in a life that is not. His love, His peace, His fellowship can be expected in a world where the unexpected is the norm. And I'll be content in Him today - will you join me?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Living Grief

 As caregivers, many of us deal with daily grief and a constant sense of loss. Even though we don't feel these emotions all of the time, they do keep coming back. For me, mine is often sparked by seeing something on my Facebook feed. I'll see one of Chris' friends or a memory and it'll tip my emotional bucket right over. Living grief is one of those things the church doesn't know how to deal with. Well, honestly, who really knows how to deal with it? It's not just going to go away, now is it? :-) In some hyper-faith circles, grief is pretty much forbidden. Yet even under the old law, it was allowed room. If you lost a close loved one such as a spouse, parent, or sibling, you were given an entire year to mourn. Our culture allows a little time, but then we are expected to be back at work, back at church, or back to our daily lives after a very short time. We just keep putting one foot in front of the other. But living grief continues. When we deal with parents wh

The Best Meeting

  I know I've written quite a few times about Hagar, but her story intrigues me. I think I can relate to the rejection and loneliness she must have felt. In numerous devotions, I've talked about how God met her right where she was. She did have God "find" her twice. But there are other people in the scriptures that God met too. The list is a bit longer when we start thinking about how many times God met someone along the way. Twice He came and ministered to Hagar, He met Saul on the road to Damascus (Acts 9), He met Balaam and stopped him before he sinned against God (Numbers 22). Jesus went through Samaria on purpose  to speak with the woman at the well. He crossed two taboos in their time - going through Samaria and speaking to a woman! (John 4) He walked out to the disciples in a storm in Matthew 8. And the Angel of God came to Gideon when he was hiding from the Midianites in Judges 6. It's easy for today's religious thinkers to label these Bible characters

But I Have Today

Do you ever have days that are just heavier than others? Of course, you do - who am I talking to? Saturday was Chris' 37th birthday. For some reason, it was unusually hard as I thought of where all his friends are today. You know, married, having kids, and enjoying their careers. I cried more than once that day. I grieved over what should have been, what could have been.  I hugged him a little tighter and thought about the progress he's made recently. The other night, I am certain he "sang" to me after I got him in bed. It was the sweetest thing and I posted it in his Facebook group where I share things I don't feel I can share as "publicly." He's moving more and initiating more of his movement on his own. There are many things to rejoice about. At the same time, I am getting older. My joints hurt and I wonder how much longer I can take care of him. I fear the day that I won't be able to. This is the way the rest of my life looks, and I am okay w