I have this feeling on my heart to write about caring for an ill or injured loved one. The other day I participated in a webinar on writing and publishing a book and I was inspired with great tips and ideas on how to organize such a task. As I was thinking about subtopics, patience popped into my mind.
Definition of patience, a noun:
1. the quality of being patient, as the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like.
2.an ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay: to have patience with a slow learner.
3.quiet, steady perseverance; even-tempered care; diligence: to work with patience.
Patience is key before, during and after a procedure, treatment, surgery, etc. Not only is patience for the patient, but the caregivers and support team as well. Quite often even the medical team needs to have patience too – with the patient and the family.
Tips to develop Patience:
Pray. Pray for it, every day – several times a day if need be. If you’re skeptical, step out in faith (confidence or trust in a person or thing; belief that is not based on proof; belief in God or in the doctrines or teachings of religion),trust me. Try it. It works.
“But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.” Romans 8:25 ESV
Educate yourself. Learn as much as you can about the illness, injury, treatment or procedure. Go to appointments with your loved one and ask questions. What are expected side effects? What is the length of recovery time? What are the signs to look for in case of trouble?
Expect the unexpected. One side effect which occurred after my husband’s surgery which neither of us expected was emotional. He was to be in a neck brace 24/7 for six weeks. Within a few days of coming home he felt isolated and trapped. He could not move his neck or head and felt that I was avoiding close physical contact. I would usually snuggle up with him on the couch, but that was difficult to do with the neck brace. I had never taken care of someone recovering from neck surgery so I was just getting used to his condition and trying to figure out what was safe to do and not hurt him. Eventually we were able to find a way to give him the close contact he needed and the reassurance I needed that I wouldn’t paralyze him. 🙂
Some people are natural born care givers and others are not. Don’t get frustrated. Keep the line of communication open and have a little patience.
How do you stay patient?