The words caught my attention as I listened to the car radio:
Sometimes in our lives we all have pain
We all have sorrow
But if we are wise
We know that there’s always tomorrow
I listened intently and tears welled up. The hopeful words to the familiar melody continued:
Lean on me, when you’re not strong
And I’ll be your friend
I’ll help you carry on
For it won’t be long
’Til I’m gonna need
Somebody to LEAN ON
Did Bill Withers write this specifically for caregivers?! I felt like his words were talking directly to me.
My life has changed quite a bit since my husband and I joined a memory support community. Although the move was a big relief from the day-to-day home care of a grown man, I still feel very sad at times. Things had become difficult at home before we made the decision to join the community, and my own health was suffering along with his from trying to do more than any one person ever could. I’m sleeping better now and slowly recovering, but the heartache is still there and the loneliness is hard to ignore. Now it’s me who needs someone to lean on!
My first line of help comes from the Lord. He gives me peace and I am aware that He is with me. The Word tells us to call upon Him in our time of need, but we need each other as well. The women in my support group are my best friends. We understand each other like no one else could. The girlfriends who are further along in the process pull the others through and offer sage advice and support. We share information and offer encouragement to others who are struggling. We end each gathering with a rousing cheer of ”We Will Survive!”
At first, it was just three of us meeting for lunch now and then, but when other women heard about our group and called, we happily included them. We’re fifteen strong now and get together every month to laugh and cry in a safe and loving environment. We call on each other when we need a hand because we know that we all have someone to lean on.
Group hug, caregivers!
Join a support group or start one in your area if there isn’t one already. Be social – isolation is a downer. Get together with friends and find somebody to talk to. Don’t forget to take care of yourself and your own needs and to lean on friends who understand – for it won’t be long ‘til THEY’RE gonna need somebody to lean on!