Welcome to Caregiver Friday!!
You may be wondering why the title of this post is written as it is so let me explain. I’ve decided to take the next 9 Fridays, taking each letter and writing about an aspect of caregiving that corresponds to that letter. So as they say in the song from the Sound of Music, “Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start.”
“C” is for Courage
When I speak of courage in caregiving I’m not thinking of the courage exhibited by our soldiers as they go off to war, putting their lives on the line. I’m talking about the courage of conviction and the courage of consciousness.
The courage of consciousness means your ability to recognize the importance of caregiving. It’s the courage to be aware of the vulnerability of the person you’re caring for due to illness or injury. It’s your level of character that draws you toward the intricacies of caregiving. It’s courage on the emotional and spiritual levels. Courage is a big issue, just think of the Lion in the Wizard of Oz. It entails much more than simply running into burning buildings; it is a different type of challenge zone when caring for someone sick or injured.
The courage is that of commitment. It’s easy to say you’re going to be a caregiver either out of duty or love and another to actually follow-through and act on those convictions. It’s the capacity and the courage to commit the process; for many quite a long haul and without knowing at the beginning how it will end. It’s a commitment to the person and the courage to maintain the relationship through what will often be difficult or challenging times.
It boils down to this…Caregiving is courage of the heart and soul. The word for courage comes from the French word “coeur” meaning heart. That’s where courage resides and I thank you for having the courage to serve as a caregiver in the life of someone who is currently challenged by illness or injury.