In a recent podcast episode, our CEO Trent Cockerham had a meaningful discussion with one of our medical social workers, Caroline Oxford. Below are some of the thoughts they shared as they talked through universal challenges that caregivers face and how those in the caregiving role can be affirmed and benefit from intentional transparency with others.
Caregiving as a new role
“For a lot of people, becoming a caregiver and starting to have that as one of your designated roles in life is new. Maybe it’s unexpected, maybe it’s not something you would have chosen for yourself. Just like any other role that we find ourselves in, it can come with a lot of uncertainty, possibly fear and even anxiety about how well we are going to perform in that role. Just like with any other new or challenging situation, caregivers benefit from having someone there to affirm that they are doing the right things and doing a great job.” – Caroline
Changing the narrative
“It is important to acknowledge that caregiving is not easy and, for most people, it is a challenge. It’s also important to find and point out moments of meaning and appreciation within the challenge in order to bring our minds back to a place of positive reflection.” – Caroline
Vulnerability can lead to a turning point
“What I frequently tell people is that caregiving is too big of a job for one person. It doesn’t matter who you are or how much experience you have. Acknowledging this to yourself and then be willing to open yourself to others who are willing to help and provide support can be extremely impactful.” – Caroline
Advice for caregivers
“For caregivers who are seeking affirming words from this message, make sure that you’ve taken the time to identify resources available to you. Trust those resources. Find the affirmation you need in those resources, whether from our hospice team, our volunteers, fellow church members or next door neighbors. Know that they are genuine and desire to support you.” – Trent
We encourage you to listen to the full episode by clicking the icon below.