What is “the blessing of caregiving?” The first thought of any normal, busy human would be that, as a caregiver, WE are the blessing to our recipient, whether he/she is a client, spouse, family member, neighbor or friend. But the true blessing… the one that often gets overlooked is the gift the caregiver receives in return.
See the Beauty in the Battle
This may not happen at the beginning of a caregiving journey, but eventually you will see the beauty in the battle. At The Nursing Team, we like to remind people that after every storm is a beautiful rainbow. After the spring rain, the grass is just a bit more green and flowers blossom. Adopting a mentality that something good always comes from something that at first seems overwhelming or dark is the first step in finding the blessing in this new role.
Realize We’re Born to Serve
Researchers have studied human nature since the beginning of time and there is evidence that we are literally born to serve. As parents we care for our children. The happiest professionals have a clear idea of how they are serving the end customer. We even get an endorphin lift when we do something as little as open the door for another or help someone with a minor task. We are wired to serve. It feels good — let the endorphins in! If you realize how much you mean to the person you are caring for, it should make you feel just as good.
Find the Opportunity
Look for the opportunities this situation presents. Is this the opportunity to give back to an amazing parent that was always there for you? Is this the opportunity to spend time with a neighbor that suddenly lost their spouse? Is this the opportunity to give to someone else wholeheartedly? Is this the opportunity to be completely selfless? What is the opportunity?
Consider it a Privilege
Perhaps the most important key in viewing your role as a caregiver a blessing is considering your role a privilege. You will take on a whole new understanding of the term “unconditional love.” Once you can put yourself in their shoes and give care with 100% compassion, you will see the beauty in every task. Every smile that comes to their face will leave one on yours.
Choose to Embrace Life
Whether your caregiving responsibility is ongoing or an end-of-life situation, it allows you to see and appreciate the gift of life — the gift of your ability to come and go as you please. It will make you slow down, have deeper conversations and appreciate the little things. It’s very easy to fall into negativity when burdened and stressed, but you can choose to fall down — or look up.
At the end of the day, the blessing of caregiving may be different for everyone. Most people you ask that have been caregivers for loved ones will say it was a blessing — even, or especially — if it involved caring until the last breath. Witnessing someone’s life coming to an end makes us question our own lives. What we do with the answers may be the biggest gift of all.
One of the best ways to allow yourself to see the blessing in caregiving is to alleviate the responsibilities that cause you the most stress, like medication management, daily hygiene, meal preparation, etc. This allows you to focus your attention on your loved one, spending more quality time together. The Nursing Team caregivers are ready to be your back up support. Learn more about our services at https://thenursingteam.com/home-care-services/