I debated on writing this entry for a while now but I really believe that it needs to be said. Let's get the disclaimers out of the way first -This is not intended to hurt anyone's feelings or to appear selfish. I realize that people do not mean any harm with their questions or comments but please THINK before you speak. The caregiver is more than likely exhausted already due to the demands of this world we live in and your comments may just do more harm than good...I have opened my mouth before and said things that I know have caused damage and wish that I had just take a moment to compose my thoughts before speaking but was too late.
What you may not fully realize is that the caregiver's life has completed changed as well as the one who has the chronic illness. You see the caregiver is now fully the financial supporter, the grocery buyer, the in-house doctor/nurse, the communicator with family and friends, the pharmacist, the maintenance overseer, the scheduler of all appointments, the chauffeur, etc....all the while the caregiver still is very much a person who must adjust to changes in their own life. Sounds exhausting - doesnt it? It is....
So things NOT to say to caregiver....in no certain order.
1. What did you do to deserve this or you must be doing something wrong in your life? Really - I have had this said to me.....Seriously, does anyone deserve to be sick? Does anyone deserve to battle chronic illnesses day in and day out for years???? I dont believe so. I quickly added that person who spoke this question to me to my prayer list cause they just dont get it.
2. When do you think he will get well? - Chronic illnesses rarely get well. They may have good days but rarely is there healing on this earth from them. So when do I think he will get well is not a question that I can even afford to ponder for a second....It is not what I think that matters.
3. Have you taken him to the doctor? Our calendars are FULL of doctor appointments - specialists in all areas of illness.... Our lives are consumed by doctors and tests and medications and doctors and tests and medications.
4. Have you prayed about it? Anyone who knows me knows that I am a praying woman....If the prayers were a phone conversation recorded by the Lord - I would be way over on my daily limits.....Prayer is the first, middle and the last thing we do. If prayers alone could heal him - he would be healed.
5. Why dont you smile like you used too? If you had any idea how much our lives have changed in the past few years - you would appreciate the smile that I am forcing through. That carefree person is gone and the caretaker is here - this is the new me. On a good day the smile will be real and on a bad day it will be forced but I know that in this world we will have troubles....weeping endures for the night and joy comes in the morning... consider it pure joy for the trials you are experiencing. Accept the smile that I am giving you - it is the BEST one I can do.
Ok rant over - thanks for listening! I spend my day trying to encourage him, myself and others that better days are coming - I do believe that - sure wish I could know when they would be here. However, I am so very thankful for the blessings of my life - the good and the bad. While this is not the way I planned my future time here on this earth - this is my reality for now. I intend to do the best I can to be the love of his life, the wife he needs, the financial supporter, the communicator, the scheduler, the inhouse doctor/nurse, etc.....the caregiver for as long as the Lord has planned.