“So this is the ‘and in sickness’ part I agreed to, aye?” I asked my husband as I was taking care of him after a surgery.
This whole care giving bit doesn’t get the respect it deserves. Not easy, especially for me taking care of someone, like him, who is the natural care giver of the marriage. So my form of care giving is to fuss at him “Don’t do that, you’ll hurt yourself”. Then I have to knock him outta the way so that I can do “his jobs” like emptying the dishwasher or taking out the garbage or making us tea. Sigh.
Then there are the pain killer meds he won’t take.
I told him he better stay healthy because I would not give him his regimen of 100 vitamins throughout the day…..and now, he won’t take the new prescription.
We all have our spiritual gifts. One time I took the test and the results came back “Social worker.” “Really?” was my incredulous inquiry. They then relooked at the numbers and corrected to “Hospitality.” Awe, yes, the relief of knowing my true gifts.
So that translates into someone who will be welcoming but will not wipe anything that leaks from them. Which is tricky when you venture into motherhood. The way I remember the perfect fruit of my loins, our daughter as a baby, was “she didn’t cry, spit up or even poop” AND she felt welcomed into this world. Glad she had the care giving daddy around, along with the nanny and the institution (preschool, school, etc.)
The nanny and I took her to the pediatrician and I remember asking the nanny, “What’s the command for….”
As we grow older, we wonder who will take care of us. I think the best bet is to stay healthy and self-sufficient. What I notice about old people (those 20 years older than whatever age I am) is that the ones who have a great sense of humor, are interested in others and contribute by using their gifts are the ones who are happiest and healthiest.
As I watched my parents grow older with physical and mental decline, I posed the question to our daughter “I don’t know if I would rather be physically disabled or mentally disabled”. “I think you would enjoy mentally disabled better.” She cheerfully suggested.
Whichever, if either, I would hope to be a joy to whomever was my caregiver. And to give caregivers credit…..because, Lord knows, we don’t pay them enough.