Mim has been a member of the same church for over forty years.
She’s served on the Women’s Ministry Council, sung in the choir, worked in the nursery, and is a prayer warrior. She’s adored by everyone who knows her.
Now in her late eighties, Mim had a stroke. Her daughter flew up from Southern California to care for her. Laura takes Mim to doctor appointments and to physical therapy. When Mim had recovered enough to go to church, Laura loaded the wheelchair into her compact car and took her mom to church for the first time in over two months.
When Laura pushed the wheelchair through the front door of the church, those gathered in the lobby rushed to greet her mother.
“Mim! So happy to see you.”
“We’ve been praying for you, Mim.”
“How are you? We’ve missed you.”
People leaned down to hug Mim and to kiss her on the cheek. Mim felt loved and appreciated. Laura felt like a shadow.
Let’s flip this around:
Laura has attended the same church for over twenty years. She’s the first to volunteer for special events. She loves her position as head usher, training newbies on how to make everyone feel welcome to her church.
Two months ago, her eighty-year-old mother had a stroke. When her mother, Mim, was released from the hospital, Laura brought her into her home rather than placing her in a facility. Because her mother needed temporary round-the-clock care, Laura hasn’t attended church.
When Mim was well enough to get out of the house, Laura loaded the wheelchair into her compact car and took Mim to church with her.
When Laura pushed the wheelchair through the front door of the church, Laura was greeted like a long-lost cousin.
“Laura, you are such a saint. Bless you for caring for your mother.”
“We’ve been praying for you, my dear.”
“I missed seeing you.”
Friends loved on Laura with hugs, kisses, and handshakes. Laura felt loved and appreciated. Mim felt like a shadow.
If you’re a caregiver, have you ever felt like a shadow, while your aging loved one gets all the attention?
Conversely, are you confident that your loved one isn’t feeling ignored, while your friends acknowledge you and your sacrifices?
Take time this week to be sure you are including your mother, father, grandparent, etc. in your conversations with others.