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  • Writer's pictureCynthia Stotlar-Hedberg

Coping with Caregiving

Coping with Caregiving

You’ve no doubt heard that aging isn’t for sissies. Caregiving isn’t for sissies either. This year alone, my hubby has been hospitalized seven times. He’s had his bone marrow totally turn off then miraculously turn back on. The doctors have no idea why either one of those happened. Like many of you, I’ve become a pro for packing for the hospital. Not a skill set I ever thought I’d need to master. But I have it down pat now.

Here are a couple of things that I do to help me cope with all the stress of caregiving and the uncertainty of life. Please realize I know we are each different and what works for me may not for you. But it might.

I let my mind roam in the wee hours when you can’t sleep anyway. Instead of fighting it and trying to force sleep or taking pills to help me sleep, I read a book, go ahead and do my to do list if that’s what is bugging me, actively pray for the list of folks on our Sunday School class or write poetry. One of my poems is shown below. I’ve read over 15 books this year to date. 😊

What I’ve come to realize is that going ahead and staying up or getting back up when my mind won’t let me sleep and doing something useful until I’m truly tired and ready for sleep is actually a better use of my time. It is useful and productive plus I sleep much better for having done it. Am I tired the next morning? Sometimes. But usually no more tired than if I tossed and turned all night and never really got any good sleep. Try it and see if it helps.


Sadness is deep as the creases on a loved ones’ gray face.

Sadness creeps into the hospital room as you sit quietly.

Sadness seeps in through your very pores.

Sadness settles deep into your bones.

Knowing that this illness is wicked adds an odd burden.

Knowing the potential outcome drives you nuts.

Knowing it won’t end well actually hurts.

Knowing is stress.

Asking why anyone should have to go through this horror?

Asking why YOUR sweetie is having to deal?

Asking why such a tragedy ever happens?

Asking why it must be him?

Sending up prayers for your loved ones’ healing.

Sending up prayers for your personal strength.

Sending up prayers for doctors’ wisdom.

Sending up prayers for peace.

Listening for God’s guidance on the diagnosis and treatments.

Listening for God’s guidance with family and friends.

Listening for God’s guidance on why.

Listening for God’s guidance.

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