There's a certain dignity of one whose pain is primarily caused by someone else's pain. Those who work, day and night unconditionally for those they love dearly. Their lives are often uprooted just because of a singular person.
Yes, dear caregivers, I'm speaking to you.
Caregivers of those who are chronically ill are some of the most beautiful, hardworking people I've ever met. There's a deep pain and suffering that afflicts those who are ill, and caregivers are the ones who take that pain upon themselves.
The pain of those who are ill is often apparent to the naked eye, but the pain of a caregiver is often hidden.
The work of a caregiver is often hidden as well. It isn't a huge task for the world. They aren't doing extraordinary things. They are just faithfully loving and serving those whom they love.
Sometimes, caregivers can often feel unseen. And it can be discouraging; I can attest to that!
It sometimes feels like we aren't doing enough. We aren't making an impact. Like we're alone.
Especially when our loved ones are still sick. When they aren't getting better, we want to do more, we want to give more and may not be able to.
And we as caregivers can give an echo to Asaph in Psalm 73.
"All in vain have I kept my heart clean and washed my hands in innocence."
Psalm 73:13 (ESV)
Except we cry, "All in vain we have spent hours upon hours praying and caring. God, do you see my prayers? Do you see my loved one's pain? Do you see my pain?"
But like Asaph was reminded of this truth, we can be too.
God does see us. He does see our work. The smallest, most insignificant work we do, and He does feel our pain. Both the pain of our loved ones and our pain.
He sees our faithfulness and He is faithful to uphold us.
And He sees our loved ones. He will bring healing, whether that's here on this earth, or in the kingdom to come.
And not only that, He will honor your faithfulness in Heaven. By unconditionally loving our chronically ill family, we are building up treasures in Heaven. When we serve our loved ones with Christ-like love, we are also serving Christ.
And by serving Christ, our treasures are laid up in Heaven, instead of earth (Matthew 6:19-21).
So, dear caregiver, you are seen, and your efforts do matter, and God does see the pain of you and your loved ones.
Take heart, your Father loves you and is caring for you.
Emilie A. is a daughter of the King, who writes for his glory alone. She loves being able to share God's Truth with others through her writing, magnifying his greatness. When's she's not writing, you'll find her spending time with her awesome family, worshiping God while playing her guitar, or using her brush pens to create lettering art.