I looked at my posting of last year this time entitled Knowing my blessings, to compare how life is a year later from that date.
Last year, it seemed like life was in a turmoil. Living with my mother was a stressful time, to say the least. When nightfall came, it was like she became a different person, especially during the 1 to 3 am time frame, when I would try to sleep and she would come to yell at me. I finally realized (as my friends who had been through similar situations with their parents kept telling me) that it was time to move out, while at the same time finding a place for her to live, knowing she could no longer live by herself.
Year 2018 began with me finding a nursing home for her to live. Trying to get that concept in her mind took months not only for her to understand, but also for her to remember. Being in the caregiver role continues to teach me how to conduct myself when I talk to her. My answers have become one to two word responses. I understand that what once began three years ago of her asking me a question one week and asking it again the following week has now dwindled to her asking me the same question multiple times in the same conversation. Though she has always told me down through the years I have the ‘patience of Job’, oftentimes I get frustrated when it comes to repeating things multiple times. But with time I have learned to keep even tempered while encouraging her in the process. Lately she calls me in the evening to make sure she is in the right place. She admits she gets scared at night, thinking she may get thrown out from the ‘hotel’, if I am coming to pick her up; eventually the thought comes to what I have told her before, that that is where she now lives and she is okay. The good thing is these conversations do not last long, and I know she just wants to be reassured that all is well. While she doesn’t like not being in control, I believe she also knows that above all I will do right by her, taking care of her finances, coming to visit her, taking her to church monthly, and bringing food to her, and surprisingly being chosen by her to do her laundry weekly, another task that’s been added to my caregiver list.
As for me, this year’s challenge regards getting healthy, knowing I can’t be sick as my mother relies on me to be there for her. Being there for her is really not an issue for me, but I acknowledge I have often felt drained from it all. It made me decide to first hire a trainer and take exercise classes weekly, see a counselor biweekly, and see a nutritionist monthly to help me eat better. As of the beginning of this month, I no longer see the counselor regularly, still in the gym with the trainer, and though it may not be much, I lost three pounds when I saw the nutritionist; what an encouragement that was, but I must continue on.
As of this writing (being a federal government employee) my agency’s funding has run out, and Congress and the President must come up with a budget. While law has been voted upon to get paid for back wages, it looks like I and other federal workers will not be working for the week of Christmas and possibly for days after that. My finances are bleak presently.
So my comparison is this: While there are still challenges (many similar and others different between last year and this year), at the same time I remember how things were, and how things have been worked out, because of God’s supply source. I continue to trust God’s process, that He will supply my every need according to His riches. I hope you will trust His process for you as well.
“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19
Merry Christmas, Caregiver.