Commit To The Task For The Right Reason
Guilt, Obligation, or Love?
I have heard of people caring for aged parents out of obligation, necessity, guilt, and (fill in the blanks). For me it was a calling. My parents had answered God's call to dedicate their lives to serving the Lord in both church ministry and in the Navy chaplaincy. I felt very strongly that the Lord was urging me to show His gratitude (and mine) by providing a loving, happy, and comfortable setting for their final days on Earth.
I would not think of taking this project on without the full support of my wife. Betty was as committed as I was. Her mom has a history of taking care of elderly family and friends so it must be in the genes. Betty had already made three trips to California to relieve her Uncle Whalen and Aunt Janet, who were caring for her Grandma Jody. Our discussions about that experience did a lot to raise our level of awareness. But more than anything, it demonstrated Betty's commitment to elder care giving. She loved my parents as if they were her own and could not imagine anyone but us taking care of them.
I imagine it helps to have a certain temperament when you embark on an assisted living project. I've always been a nurturer toward our own children. In church ministry I always had a special feeling for the older folks in the church and made a special effort to see to their special needs. MORE>