A Caregiver’s Lessons

A Caregiver’s Lessons
By Lynn Wyvill, a Faithful Supporter of the Dominican Friars

I closed my business in August 2011 and was looking forward to retirement. My plans changed when Mom took a serious fall in September that started the downward spiral of poor physical health and dementia of both my parents.

The Dominican Friars thank Lynn and Richard Wyvill for their support. We keep all those caring for loved ones in our prayers.

I moved them to a Continuing Care Community and became their long-distance caregiver for eight years, managing every aspect of their lives. I was not prepared for how demanding, physically and emotionally exhausting, and difficult caregiving would be.

Why was God asking me to do this work? I told Him that my heart wasn’t big enough, and my spirit wasn’t generous enough. I knew that the Lord was always with me, but too many days my faith felt smaller than a mustard seed so I asked God to strengthen me.

I prayed for guidance when I had no idea how to help my parents. I prayed for empathy to understand aging from their perspective. I asked for patience when I had to repeat many times what I just said because they didn’t hear or understand. I prayed for strength and an increase in selflessness when I was weary and overwhelmed. When all of us were overcome with sorrow, I prayed for hope. I prayed with gratitude, too, for every day that no one cried or was in pain, for every day that Mom and Dad could enjoy their food or a stroll in the garden, for every day we could be together.

God heard those prayers and provided all that I needed. Caregiving was the Lord’s way of helping me grow, humbling me, and teaching me to rely on and trust Him more.

Lynn Wyvill’s book, Abundant Strength: A Caregiver’s Prayers, is available through Amazon

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