Sunday, May 19, 2019

Who Takes Care of the Caregiver? - Dealing with EXHAUSTION

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo SundayCaregiver1_zpsh7utnve1.jpg

Who Takes Care of the Caregiver? - Dealing with EXHAUSTION

This is the first post in a new series about encouraging caregivers.  When a family member becomes ill or elderly, nobody ever thinks about what that situation does to the caregiver.  I have been a caregiver for most of my life.  When I was a little girl (I am the girl on the right in the picture above), my family moved into my grandparents home so that my mom could take care of my grandfather.  Our home was a 30 minute drive from my grandparents home and this situation was a strain on the entire family.  I had to change schools and while my mother was going back and forth to the hospital, she needed to schedule a reliable sitter to stay at home with my little sister and also for that sitter to be there when I returned from school.  Meanwhile, my father was driving 30 minutes back and forth to checkup on our home either after work &/or on weekends.  It was exhausting.  
This caregiving continued into adulthood for me when my husband went through some serious illnesses and now, for the past decade we have been living in my in-laws home to take care of them (my in-laws).  I totally understand how difficult it is to take care of elderly family members, as well as maintaining two properties inside and out.  It is exhausting.
Often, there might not be any other family member around to help - Or, the family members are unwilling or too selfish to aid in anyway.  These types of situations only add to the exhaustion.

EXHAUSTION - a state of extreme physical or mental fatigue

The question of the day is:  
As a Caregiver, how can I deal with exhaustion?

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo SundayCaregiver1A_zpszikxyzcs.jpg

"Do you not know?
    Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
    and his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary
    and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
    and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the Lord
    will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint."
Isaiah 40:28-31

You should take comfort in knowing that God will NEVER be tired or weary!  This means that we can go to Him any time of any day and in any situation!  Our Lord God Almighty will be there for us!  There is nothing too large (or too small) that God cannot handle.  Just as important is the fact that our Lord understands EVERYTHING! - "his understanding no one can fathom".  
This means that you are NOT alone.

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo SundayCaregiver1B_zpsf9mpx0ws.jpg

"Truly my soul finds rest in God;
    my salvation comes from him."
Psalm 62:1

"He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior,"

Titus 3:5 & 6

"Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will."

Romans 12:1 & 2

Find rest through reading the Bible - meditating on God's word can be very calming and often, He (our Lord), will give you guidance.  You might not even realize that you were struggling with something or searching for answers until you read a passage of Scripture that overwhelmingly touches your heart and changes your opinion/mind.
"be transformed by the renewing of your mind"

Find renewal from the Holy Spirit by praying - remember that the Holy Spirit has been "poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior"!!  The Holy Spirit can minister to you through prayer with a deep urging that cannot be ignored.  Make sure that you pray in a quiet place so that you can be sensitive to noticing these nudges.

by Angie Ouellette-Tower for photo SundayCaregiver1C_zpsyjgbegfq.jpg

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day."

2 Corinthians 4:16

"fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."
Hebrews 12:2-3

That daily renewal is ESSENTIAL if you are going to be able to continue being a caregiver.  You might find yourself looking haggard or maybe the house is in a perpetual state of untidiness but God has given you this task to take care of your loved one.  Follow Jesus' example and do not lose heart!  Endure the hardships of caring for your family member because you are needed.

photo SundayCaregiver1D_zpszu1vultl.jpg
My family has exprienced that firsthand - life-threatening type problems. 

Remember that physical, emotional and mental exhaustion is eliminated by becoming renewed and refreshed in God - through His Word (meditating on the Bible), through prayer and by the Holy Spirit!


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  1. I think that having faith is great and a wonderful comfort to get you through the hard times. However, it's always okay to need a break from caregiving. That's why we have a respite caregiver who comes and spends a day with my mom once a month so I can just take a break. I don't feel guilty about needing this break and it helps me refresh and recharge to be a better caregiver.

    1. Thank you so much for your advice! I just wanted to make sure that you knew that I was NOT implying that one should feel guilty for having a break from caregiving (I'm sorry if that's what was inferred). You are richly blessed if you have the option of getting a respite caregiver - some people do not have that option but daily renewal is still possible through God. Have a blessed day!

  2. This is a beautiful post. Thanks so much for the rich and deep encouragement. I especially like this part, Find rest through reading the Bible, Find renewal from the Holy Spirit by praying. I help my 81-yo Mom, who is self-efficient but is elderly and needs my help with something or another everyday. And when she has flareups of her conditions, she needs even more immediate help. Reading what you have written was very soothing to me.

  3. Thank you for a beautiful post. It brought tears to my eyes. I was a caregiver to my dad, and at the same time my husband was going to his folk's house three nights a week after work to help with whatever they needed, and on the weekends. His siblings weren't involved.

    I am now a caregiver to my wonderful husband. If you would, please pray for his healing. We will never give up hope. Covid has put a damper on his recovery (therapy) however, we both keep the faith. Thank you.


Please feel free to leave comments or questions (no question is ever stupid) - They will show up on the blog once I have read through them.
Thank You.

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