It's too bad everyone doesn't understand caregivers and caregiving. Very few truly understand the toll it takes on one's body, mind, emotions, mental health, etc., until they have to take that journey themselves. And sadly, many people refuse to care for their loved ones. It's fair to say that many just can't do it. I've seen so many choose to walk away. It's a sad ordeal. But I get it - caregiving takes a lot out of you. But we have to just keep moving along and trusting God for each day. Of course, that's easier said than done.
One of the biggest challenges many caregivers face is social isolation. For instance, not only did I have to change the way I worked to care for my son - I had to change the way I lived too. While it's easier to get him out and about now, there are still many challenges on a social level. On one hand, we can feel like we stick out like a sore thumb. At the same time - while feeling awkwardly placed in a social event, we are ignored. It's a very loud thing to be ignored. Last night, I ventured out to a local park for free pickleball lessons. I don't have a sitter available, so of course, I took Chris with me. We did have a nice walk around the park. But those on the pickleball courts literally walked around us, and the ignoring was loudly understood. We just left.
Can I say that I felt ignored? Irrelevant. Devalued. Insignificant? I vowed that would be our last attempt at being social. Although I've always been a very social being - I just can't anymore. The problem is that we've also been ignored when we've tried a new church, sadly. I'm just tired of trying. But it's okay - it's just time to keep moving along.
Here's the good thing. I'm reminded that God never just moves along. He waits for me. Sometimes, God has to patiently wait for my mind and emotions to catch up to Him. Other times, He is waiting for me to get myself together enough to seek Him - oftentimes, there are no "right" words to pray. He gets that, too, and again waits for me. But He never just moves along and hopes I catch up or, like this group last night, seemed to just hope I'd go away like I did. God waits to see if I need tears wiped away. He waits to see if I need a moment to gather myself or if I need to be carried. God is even willing to just sit and wait with me as needed. So, while I am trying to just keep moving along in life - He remains my constant companion.
Nothing is off-limits to God. He's with us in our deepest wordless sorrow, and He remains when we have joyful moments that we can't express. He is with us in laughter and tears and everything in between. I am so thankful for His presence. It really does make a difference.
Today, I'll remind myself to be grateful for His watch care over my soul. I'll shift my thoughts from social rejection to God's acceptance into the beloved. My meditations will be on how welcome I am with Him day or night, from emotional highs to devastating lows - His heart's door is always open to us. I'll gladly welcome His open arms and trust Him for one more day as I just keep moving along. Will you join me?