I'm glad you're here. Grab a cup of your favorite warm beverage and join me. Let's catch up.
But before we get started, I have a public service announcement for you: PSA - YIKES! I just noticed that the new subscribers' blog link is to the New Year 2021 thank you gift (Yes- 2021). Don't know how that happened. I've included the correct link is at the bottom of this newsletter.
By now, you've probably gotten the Christmas decorations packed away. Maybe even redecorated for Valentine's Day! 💝
Not me. I kept one snow globe on display in the living room. It's on a timer and lights up for six hours a day, gently blowing snow around an old red pick-up truck holding a green pine tree in the bed.
Close your eyes. Can you see it? (Okay, open one eye - I pasted it in below 😉)
Looking inside that snow globe reminds me of joyful days, like when I was a child making snow angels, and then making them with my children, too.
So having that snow globe on my end table is like having a momentary respite whenever I want. And magically, I feel somewhat renewed when it's time to get back to reality.
Yes, by now you've figured out that I'm a daydreamer, at least sometimes, anyway.
Renewal and Respite
I'm not saying to daydream your life away. I am trying to emphasize the need for respite and renewal.
As a family caregiver (53 Million in the US, 2020), I cherish the four-day weekend my husband and I enjoyed last summer. It was our first vacation in four years. So, yes, I daydream about those days we had together—a beautiful respite.
No schedule. No one else to care for, only a beautiful beach, a windy pier, long bike rides, and each other.
We returned home with renewed sensitivity, strength, and spirits. It felt so good. Because of that short vacation, we were ready to step back into our caregiver roles until next time.
Maybe you didn't sign up for the circumstances in which you find yourself today. But, whether it's a job, ministry, marriage, or caregiving situation, sometimes life gets weighty.
That's when we can look to our snow globes and find a momentary respite.
Try recalling what God has already done in creation, Jesus' birth, death, resurrection, and ascension. Or what He has done for you, alone. God's faithfulness is all around us, and His mercies never end.
Close your eyes. Can you see it?
"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." Lam. 3:22-23
The truth about family caregivers
If you aren't a caregiver today, I'm still here for you.
"There are only four kinds of people in the world: those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers, and those who will need caregivers." –Rosalynn Carter
From the time we come into this world, we need care until we learn to care for ourselves. Then, eventually, we'll take a turn in each of the four categories Mrs. Carter listed.
When it's your turn to be a caregiver, will you argue about it with God, or will you trust Him?
I can tell you that life and your role as a caregiver only gets better, easier, lighter when you accept the assignment. Corny as it might sound, there really is joy in the journey.
I appeal to you, therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. –Romans 12:2 (ESV)
What caregiver category (from the quote) are you in today?
Keep going - Your FREE phone wallpaper
is waiting for you further down in this newsletter.
I WENT BACK TO SCHOOL! Isn't that what you do when you retire?
Oh sure, I retired in 2021 but I'm not done yet. This going back to school thing isn't the first time for me, either. I got my MBA at 50 (that's another story).
But, I think God has something else planned for me, in addition to being my sister's caregiver. So, I'm leaning in! You see, I want to grow this ministry's reach to move more family caregivers from surviving to thriving. So, I signed up to learn how to do all the Internet and Instagram things it will take to do that.
Wish me luck!
So, what's new with you?
Feel free to respond to this email or DM me @myconcretedove on Instagram. I would love to hear from you.