Ministering Angel

You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give. ~Khalil Gibran, artist, poet, writer

I’ve watched you from afar
Leading your mother into church,
Folding her walker, setting it aside,
Then making sure she has a hymnal.

I’ve watched you from afar
And marveled at your inner strength,
And admired your patience and kindness
To the one who gave you of herself first.

I’ve watched you from afar
And wondered whether you ever get tired
Or bored or angry or sad or frustrated
At caring for an elderly woman with health issues.

I’ve watched you from afar,
Contemplating whether you still laugh and enjoy life.
Get together with friends, hoist a tall cold one,
Or merely exist, dreading each new day.

I’ve watched you from afar
And pondered how the caregiving role fell to you.
Whether you’re the only one or the best one
And whether you chose it or were selected.

I’ve watched you from afar
And asked myself if I could one day do what you do.
Or if it’s easier to shuttle our elderly off to facilities
Where professionals can provide “better” care for them.

I’ve watched you from afar
And whispered a prayer for your blessing.
God surely must have something special in mind
For someone who gives so much of themselves!

Note: This is basically a true account. In a church I used to attend, there was one “ministering angel” who regularly assisted her elderly parent, causing me to do a lot of wondering!

Caregiving, by Default

I never saw myself in the role of caregiver.

Never trained as a nurse. Never watched my parents care for their parents.

And if I’m to be truly honest, I don’t have a caregiver’s personality. I’m more selfish than that. And, as a creative person, I protect my psyche and guard my time with a certain fierceness.

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