Spirituality in Your Caregiving Journey: Making Sense of It All

By: Tiffany Cloud-Mann, M.Ed.

Caregiving is such a hard job and it might be the hardest role to play for someone you love. It can exhaust you in all areas of your life, including your spirituality. There are most likely days you resent it and feel angry about the role you are in. All normal. There are decisions to make as a caregiver on your loved one’s behalf, decisions that you may cause you a lot of stress. You may wonder if you are doing the right thing. It might be a decision to bring help in the home or move your loved one to an Assisted Living. Maybe the decision to take their car keys away or admit them to the hospital. I recently heard on a podcast; a spiritual adviser suggests that no personal interaction with another human being in this life is a coincidence. The people we are in line with at the grocery store, the patient that came to our office or the parents we were given – every assignment is on purpose for a purpose. In your hardest days, constantly giving of yourself to someone you love, remembering that it’s not by chance that you were chosen for this role, might make it a little easier. Life is full of joy and can also have moments or years of suffering. I once heard that you are either in suffering, it’s behind you or it’s in front of you. That statement is a bit hard to swallow and one that reminds us that we need something larger than ourselves to rely on. 

In your hardest days of caregiving, have you ever asked the universe, God or whoever might be listening for a sign to let you know you are doing the right thing, that you are following the right path or you aren’t alone? Like a message of comfort for when we have a tough decision to make or a worry on our mind. Some of you reading this may not consider yourself spiritual or religious and that’s okay. I have a friend who refers to the universe a lot and it’s funny because we can be talking about something hard or something, we need support on, and we can agree that the universe and God are right there with us on our side.  I’ve had some thoughts lately about writing a book that would include multiple examples of God’s messages to us. I have had several of these messages given to me over the years and the miraculous nature of them continues to astonish me. Signs from God have given me confidence and trust in my steps. I would like to share with you one of those messages. 

A Message I Received

A little over a year ago, I was trying to decide on making a pretty big change in my life. I was choosing to leave something I knew everything about, believed in and was confident in. I was trying to decide if I should move on to something new and different, something I was feeling a nudge to do. I was very nervous and scared, as I didn’t want to make the wrong decision. I was in church the day before I needed to make my decision and was still somewhat on the fence about what to do. My pastor that day, shared that the phrase “do not be afraid” appears 365 times in the bible and he shared a specific verse: 

Joshua 1:9, which says, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go”. 

That same day, later that afternoon, my youngest son and I were at our local YMCA. As we were leaving, he asked if he could pick out a brightly colored slit of paper, curled up in a bowl, with a bible verse typed on it, our Y’s bowl of “soul food” for the taking. I agreed. Once we were in the car, he asked if we could read it. As I unrolled the piece of paper, and read the verse on it, I began to cry. Would you believe it was the very verse from church that morning and the verse I needed to make my decision. I had prayed for a sign and a sign was given. 

 

A Care Manager’s Prayer for You

I encourage you to believe in the everyday signs that can encourage you as a caregiver that you are making the right decisions and you aren’t alone. Maybe you are reading this and have been asking for a resource to come along and guide you in your journey. Reading this blog may be your sign. A message that you aren’t alone could also look like a friend calling at just the right time, to take you to lunch or give you a much-needed break. But, if you are the praying type, ask for a sign from above to show you the way to go. I am confident a sign will be given. As you read this, please don’t think for a minute any of my thinking or messages to you negate the hard journey you are on as a caregiver. From the outside, I can only pray that in hard times, it counts for something and serves a higher purpose. 

I am not a spiritual advisor, but as a Care Manager, I can take things off your plate so that you can focus on your spiritual life or whatever area is lacking. Call us today, even if it’s just to chat about how we might help. Ask for Tiffany. 

Below is A Morning Practice that someone recently shared with me and I am trying to make reading it part of my morning routine. It brings comfort in the ever-changing moments of life. 

 

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