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A CAREGiver’s calling

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Yesterday was the hardest day I have had at Home Instead Senior Care. My team and I have been through a lot. We have celebrated many successes with CAREGivers and clients. We have shared personal triumphs together and seen our business grow and flourish by God’s own hand. We have also lost people near and dear to our hearts. We have wept over family trials and when CAREGivers have fallen ill. To us, it’s personal means that our job is more than a job. It is a journey. And on this journey, same as any, there are good and bad times. Yesterday was the absolute worse….

A CAREGiver that has been with us for 8 years and given her golden years to ensure that others were taken care of, had a warm meal, never felt lonely and were safe in their homes has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. At first, I was shocked. We all know the signs and we have seen the decline in her. I had to make the most gut wrenching phone call to this CAREGiver’s daughter to express our concerns. But there was no denying it anymore. There it was… the diagnosis. And it was what we all had feared.

Secondly, I was angry. I cried out to God, “It’s not fair. God, I know that you have a plan but someone who has given her all for others shouldn’t now have to worry about losing herself, her mind.” I wasn’t necessarily angry with God but I had questions and I had to ask why? 

It doesn’t seem fair. We are all worried about our beloved CAREGiver. She cried as she shared with us how scared she was and how she felt fine. She said she couldn’t believe that this was happening because she knew she was “a little forgetful” but she figured that just came with getting older. We listened as she shared the same story over twice in a five minute span. We cried with her as she had to sign her resignation form, realizing that this meant she officially couldn’t work with her clients anymore. We all supported this beautiful lady as we remembered the 5 years she was a CAREGiver for an Alzheimer’s client. Through it all we were brave and strong for her.

I realized as I reflected on this later that God does have a plan. We aren’t meant to understand it. I might never fully understand why someone so giving and compassionate was struck with such a tragic illness but I did think that maybe God placed her with her Alzheimer’s client to help prepare her heart for what was ahead. It would be just like God to take something so dark and in the midst of this storm, remind us all that there is hope. Hope in Him. Hope that he has a plan for each of us.

Who knows why she chose Home Instead Senior Care or that as fate would have it, she would work with the client she had for so long. Who knows why she, of all people, would be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. And who knew this would affect us all so deeply… What I do know is that I trust God. I trust his plan. No matter what it will all be ok. And most of all I believe that what we do at Home Instead Senior Care is a calling. This career is not for the faint of heart or someone looking for a paycheck. We impact the lives of others every day and sometimes doubting our abilities or reasons why things happen the way they do. Nevertheless the fact remains that we were chosen by God to serve his purpose. I for one will never forget this moment. I will never forget the stories or the time shared with this CAREGiver. She has forever made and left a lasting impression on all of us and for that I am eternally grateful. Dear E, we love you!

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