Showing posts with label work. Show all posts
Showing posts with label work. Show all posts

The Dream of an 8-Hour Day


 I'm starting to wonder what it's like to work an 8-hour shift - then just go home. lol. Many caregivers work an outside job plus caring for their loved ones. For others, their "8-hour job" is caring for their loved ones. But in today's world, it seems like just a far-off dream. But occasionally, I let my mind wander about what it would be like to just go to work - then come home. I vaguely remember something about it, but it seems so far away.

A caregiver's day is usually full of all sorts of stuff. Many of you, like myself, work online while caring for your loved ones. But it is certainly a juggling act most days. Trying to get everything done for my son plus keeping my clients happy is a huge chore. Additionally, I need to eat right (I plan his meals, right?), get adequate amounts of sleep, and drink enough water. Oh, and don't forget to get at least 20-30 minutes of exercise each day. We need 15-20 minutes of sunshine too... I'm tired and overwhelmed just thinking about all that. My thoughts circle back to that elusive 8-hour day...

Caregiving is so easy - said no one, ever! No matter what level of caregiving you are at - full-time, part-time, long-distance, short distance, or in your own home, it can eat your lunch. Am I right?

Yet at the same time, it's so rewarding to love someone enough to lay down all your desires, needs, wants, and dreams just so you can take care of them. It's admirable. And it's like Jesus. He literally died for us so we could be righteous and free from condemnation. I was talking to a fellow writer at the local Christian writer's group I meet with once a month. She was asking a lot of questions about caregiving, and the decisions that had to be made to be where we are today. 

I likened it to the decisions Jesus made to stay on that cross. As painful as it was - His love for us held Him there. Similarly, my love for my son holds me at his side. And your love for your caregivee keeps you in a place where you can take care of them. Are we perfect? Well, I'm not. lol But I'm still here. No matter how hard it gets - I still take care of Chris and I still pursue God's heart.

Today, I'm going to think about how much love it took for Jesus to submit to the cross, then stay on it even when it hurt. I'll be thankful as I consider how much He really does love us. I won't fight the gratitude I feel when I think about how He saw you and me - the joy - set before Him so He chose the route of the cross. He also wanted to please the Father. I think our actions please Him too. Don't you?

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31 Days in Psalm 31 devotional book cover


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Poems for Caregivers bookcover


At Day's End

Caregiver's tasks are endless and almost every evening I have this sinking feeling like I didn't get enough done. It doesn't matter how much I did get done in a day, I feel like I fell far short of all I needed  to get done. Does anyone else ever feel that way?

We already have enough on our plate just in taking care of another whole person or two. I say this as I not only take care of my son who is total assist, but am shifting into a caregiving role with my parents as well. My son can do absolutely nothing on his own but breathe. I not only have to puree all of his food or blend up shakes to put in his tube, but I also have to take the time to feed him. Each day I bathe him, dress him, get him up, stretch him, stand him, entertain him, etc. It starts early in the morning and goes until late at night. Even when he's in the bed early mornings or late evening he has to be bolused, changed, turned, and kept comfortable. It's my pleasure.

Add to the daily chores of caregiving all the other things that must be done and every single one of us have a full load.  I can't speak for anyone else but I know we all have laundry, dishes, vacuuming, and all sorts of cleaning to do daily. Many caregivers have other children to provide care for or hold down a job. In my situation I work from home as a freelance writer; this can tie up quite a bit of time, especially if I start running behind. I have deadlines I have to meet and I can get pretty stressed out at times. I am learning strategies for keeping up and that it helping some.

Let's just take yesterday for example. I did all my caretaking responsibilities for Chris keeping him, fed, moving and comfortable, providing stimulation and ROM activities plus I completed 3 projects for clients and then went to taekwondo to complete my requirements for belt testing. But when I got home and got my son in bed, all I could think about was how much I had left to do. Even though I did quite a bit for a day- I felt so inadequate at the day's end. This is my typical late night activity. I look back over the day and think about what I did. Most of the time I feel disappointed and like I need to do so much more. It's a vicious cycle.

I turned to the wisdom of King Solomon for some direction and help. In Ecclesiastes 2:20 the wise king says So I turned in despair from hard work. It was not the answer to my search for satisfaction in this life. Interesting, huh? He tried working hard and then he tried hardly working and came to this conclusion he shares in verse 24: So I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work. Then I realized that this pleasure is from the hand of God. For who can eat or enjoy anything apart from Him? God gives wisdom, knowledge and joy to those who please Him.

Caregivers do not have life easy no matter what their situation is. It can feel like life has dealt us an unfair blow and we just can't live life like everyone else. But we can be satisfied in our work, and we can be satisfied in our God! I really believe that God is pleased with our caregiving efforts and that we bring Him pleasure because we look like Him. 

Today I am going to smile and give myself a break. Even though I may feel like I always fall short - my efforts are pleasing to Him. I will embrace the truth that He is pleased with my actions as a caregiver and I will relax in Him today. My thoughts will be on how much He does for me - and how He takes care of me (that's a full time job too) and I will allow myself to be content with whatever I can reasonably get done in a day. I will let it all go and let Him be my joy for today. Will you join me?

Conquerors!

A very quoted scripture comes from Romans 8. Verse 28 is probably way overused and highly misunderstood! We tend to use it for everything in our lives that does not make sense. But it is so comforting to know that no matter what is going on in our lives He can somehow work it out for good, and for His own purposes. That sounds good, but I'm not sure we'll ever really understand it!

Further on in this chapter (one of my favorites!) is verse 31 - if God is for us who could be against us? I really love that scripture. It holds so true for all our Bible heroes that we've studied all these years.We just forget that it's true for us as well. Actually, we would not worry about this aspect too much if there were not situations or persons who were against us!

Immediately following this favorite is a list of some terrible things. tribulation, distress, persecution, famine...and that is followed by two things that I will meditate on today and I hope you will too. One - that we are more than conquerors in Him. Whether or not we are immediately facing stressful situations. We maybe don't fully understand what more than a conqueror is. A conqueror is a winner, but what would be more than that? And two - His unchangeable love for us.

It looks something like this. Just imagine that you've worked your way up the ranks to a successful position in a company. It's taken years and much hard work. You had to go to school and learn so many different things. Then find the right first job and work your way up in that company. It's taken you years of toil and stress to arrive but you have finally worked your way up to the top ranks and are now the CEO of a huge corporation. You  did all the work to get there...years and years of struggles and learning and hassle. you are a conqueror! Today you got your first check...and took it straight to your spouse! They are more than a conqueror! You did all the work - they reaped all the benefits!

Jesus did all the work for us - we just get to reap the benefits of His work in our lives. In this same passage, verse 32 stands out. Basically it says - God gave His son - why would He withhold anything from us? He is waiting for us to rest in Him today - so that we can reap the benefit of His work...and be more than conquerors!

Right Back to Him

 God is so patient with us. I run to Him so often, I often wonder if He silently shakes His head as I approach for the millionth time. In a ...