The Caregiving Connection, a Blessing in Disguise!

There are so many aspects of caregiving to discuss, and most of what is considered the elephant in the caregiving room is negative.  However, there are the good aspects of caregiving that are often overshadowed by the negatives, and never mentioned or forgotten.  Everyone’s experience as a caregiver is different, but this post is going to cover the beauty in caring for others.

My parents are often mentioned because I see the caregiving they do, and I speak with them about their lives, their sacrifices, and the blessings they have.  Despite the tremendous amount of work they do, they remain positive about their lives and the future.  There are moments where they may struggle and question the direction their lives have taken.  There are days where they just wish for a break because they are exhausted.  But, they have also expressed a profound feeling of gratitude for their lives.  They feel better knowing their loved ones are receiving proper care.  They know that as long as they are caring for them, they will be loved and provided for.  They want to make sure there is a positive, nurturing, family connection because they do not look upon them as a burden, but as humans.  This is where the beauty and blessings of caregiving lives, in the hearts of the carers who give because they truly care.

Another story of caregiving that has been a blessing, is the care my husband and I shared after each of our daughter’s open-heart surgeries.  After her first surgery, she had her vocal cords nicked and we couldn’t hear her cry.  My husband had to work full-time, and when he came home, we slept in shifts so one of us would always be awake with her.  We kept logs of medication dosages, and feedings.  She had to be on oxygen, but we could not allow her oxygen saturation to go above 65-70% because it could cause severe problems.  We were exhausted, but we also had so much time to spend with her, getting to know her.  My husband took a strong, active role in her care, and I saw their bond grow.  It was the countless hours of care that helped us to develop an even stronger connection. I am so grateful for those moments.

Caregiving is often thankless, but we can find meaning and gratitude in the connections that are made.  The truth is that caregiving is an act of human kindness and love.  It is a sacrifice, but it is rewarded in smiles, in the time spent with a loved one, and in the human connection that is often forgotten in our fast-paced world.  Caregiving speeds us up with lots of work to do, but it also slows us down when we realize the mortality that faces us all.  It is a blessing in disguise.

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3 thoughts on “The Caregiving Connection, a Blessing in Disguise!

  1. I agree it is a tough and thankless job at times. The one thing I would say that helps me thru those times is the reward I get in return. Their smile, their laughter, their love and a strong bond. After 14 years of caretaking my father I love him more today then as a child. Growing up he was an alcholic and abuser with violence and beatings. When He came to live with me, and my mom too, I knew We were in for a lot of work. Mom unfortunately passed away on a day that was so Her, All Saints Day, Sept. 01, 2013. She suffered so in the last year and it tore at my heart but at this last year I was a caretaker and I had to set aside being the daughter to get Her the help she needed. Spent a lot of time with ambulances, hospitals and doctors and emergency rooms. I stood beside Her to the end. Then I had to tell dad. He having Alz., being diagnosed 9 years ago now. Well after mas death it was ground hog day for a long time. I was fortunate that I took dad out to eat solely to ask questions about His childhood. To try to understand Him and to understand why he was the way He was. Yes, it was His father who was His abuser. Dad being an alcholic, it brought out the meanness in him. Scared us 6 kids. Unfortunately He it did not stop the cycle. I did. Learning about His abuse as a child made me understand Him and His behavior. Over time the Alz. changed Him to a very quiet man. Very thankful for all the kindness and care we give Him. He enjoys going out for rides, dinner and some shopping. Even though he was my abuser We have found a way to live together and let the past go. Now He tells me He loves me with all His heart all the time and thanking me all the time. As an adult I have a closeness with Him I never thought would happen. I see His smile, His laughter, His sadness and His struggle. It is important to learn about who you care for. This makes for a better caretaker.

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