The Stewardship of Caregivers

Peter Rosenberger

 
My wife is missing both legs.
 
If I injure my foot, should I ignore it simply because it pales next to her reality?
 
As ridiculous as it may sound, that’s the kind of reasoning we caregivers often use—we deny or push our health needs to the back-burner. My feet are the only feet she can count on, and I need to be a good steward of them by properly caring for them. That principle applies across the board to our entire body (and hearts, wallets, jobs, etc.)
 
The word I’m increasingly finding appropriate for me as a caregiver is “stewardship.” That one word has changed the way I look at my role as a caregiver, and how I approach daily challenges.
I used to (often) freak out and ask, “How in the world am I going to ____?”
 
After three decades of this, I’m learning to ask, “Am I being a good steward of the precious (and often scarce) resources in this particular crisis?” (Sometimes a “resource” is simply my energy level or mental health.)
 
Sometimes, asking a better question—helps illuminate a healthier path.
And healthy caregivers …make better caregivers.
 
 

 

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