May 28, 2006

P-P-P-Pressure

I don’t know if this is true or not, but I think it’s harder for caregivers in a traumatic situation than the person who went through the event. I haven’t done any research on it yet, but you know I will be this week. I think caregivers are under tremendous pressure to always be responsible. And it’s hard to be the responsible one all the time.

When Roger first came home, I had a hard time being patient with him. Thank goodness it only lasted a short while, because it was hard. I had to pray a lot (and ask for a lot of prayer) and by the grace of the Lord, he gave me a new understanding and patience for Roger. Now I’m struggling with an intense pressure to be responsible at all times.

I guess the hard part is not being responsible, it’s the guilt and selfishness inflicted on the caregiver by the caregiver themselves when they are not responsible. If you decide to do something for yourself, if the person in need doesn’t put the feelings of guilt on you, you put them on yourself when your plans don’t go as planned because of the needs of the person you are caring for. You feel guilty and/or selfish for trying to do something for yourself instead of the person you are caring for. Or if things don't go as planned, you feel bad for not being more respoonsible. All this in turn creates exhaustion because you just can’t keep going like that.

After waking up at 7:45 a.m. on a Sunday morning to help Roger load the video equipment in the truck, drop it and Roger off at church and run two miles, I decided I needed to be irresponsible for a few hours. I cooled down a little longer than usual after my run. I sat and checked my email instead of rushing into the shower. I sat and did nothing while I drank Gatorade. I did move the sheets from the washer to the dryer, but I got in the shower really late after I called a friend and bailed on something I said I’d do at church. And now I’m sitting here venting on this blog instead of drying my hair and getting dressed. I’m obviously going to be late for church, but I’m not concerned about what I’m missing. (I could care a less about the Da Vinci Code.) Who knows, maybe I’ll be irresponsible the rest of the day. Okay, after we take the video equipment back to the studio. I am so glad we have tomorrow off for Memorial Day. I need it.

I know this too will pass, but it’s hard sometimes while you’re going through it. I just wanted you all to know that although many of you think we are so strong, we do have our moments of weakness. We are only getting through this because we are being carried by our Lord and through the love and prayers of you.

The LORD is my shepherd; I have everything I need.
He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams.
He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
Even when I walk through the dark valley of death, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.
You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You welcome me as a guest, anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings.
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the LORD forever.

Psalm 23 (NLT)

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Stay Strong Holly! You can do it! With God ALL things are possible. You can do it!
xoxox Yoli

rhonda said...

Holly,

Taking time for yourself is not irresponsible but necessary for you in order to keep caring for others. Don't feel guilty for taking the time to relax and slow down. You need to take care of yourself, and sometimes that means putting your needs above those of others. You will be a better caregiver for it!

Sending lots of love your way! Take time tomorrow to do absolutely nothing!

Anonymous said...

Dearest Holly,
I know what you feel, I has there before, and I know we can do it because God is with us. It's hard, exausting and sometime frustrade but you know what??? You did the right thing.
I read it in somewhere " Women are like tea bag: they don't know how strong they are until they got into hot whater" E.Roosevelt
Love and pray,
Agmar