A Prayer for Caregivers
Composed by Sister Carole Kimes
Sister Carole Kimes has been a Sister of Providence for more than 35 years. Her experience as a hospice nurse and as a caregiver for her aging parents supports her current ministry with those in various stages of transition.
God of Love,
as a caregiver, I need the grace to be loving even when I do not love all that I am asked to do. It is extremely difficult to watch the one I love slowly lose their ability to care for self and to witness the pain of illness. More is demanded of my time and sometimes there just doesn’t seem to be enough of that in the day to tend to all that needs to be done. Help me prioritize my day by being present to ___________ as I care for his/her needs and wants. Ultimately, at the end of the day when I lay my head on my pillow, I want to say I lived this day with love.
God of Mercy,
some days I need mercy for myself as much as for the one I am caring for. Can I forgive myself for not doing everything perfectly? Can I forgive my loved one for not remembering to be safe as he/she strives to maintain his/her independence? Can I be forgiving when my fear of losing them conflicts with their fear of losing their independence? It is then when I need patience to walk gently with ___________. My fear of the unknown future causes me to be reactive at times. Help me trust your plan for him/her. Teach me to embrace the fragileness of the human body and to let go of expectations I have toward ___________ who needs my assistance. Whatever I do for another, I want to wrap it with kindness, compassion, and authenticity.
God of Justice,
empower me to be generous as I share in caregiving for my loved one. Let me give to him/her out of a place of abundance so their spirit will be nourished. Help me be a voice for ___________ when society discounts or minimizes theirs. In those moments when my spirit is dry, and my body is tired, empower me to seek help so that I can deliver quality care and respect at all times.
God of Providence,
I must remember that I am called upon only to do what I can. As I care for my loved one, grace me with the trust to rely on you as each day unfolds. Give me the strength to be strong in those times when my loved one becomes weaker and needs increased care. Give me clarity of vision for him/her as their own ability to think clearly eludes them. When my own vision is clouded by fatigue and frustration, give me respite moments so I will regain new energy to provide the care needed.
thank you for the sacredness of this ministry to be a caregiver. It is truly one of the most challenging and gratifying opportunities in my life. The days I want to return to a sense of normalcy are when my spirit needs to be fed. In the midst of caregiving, I turn to you to fill my soul with what is needed for the moment. Only you know the path that is marked out as I walk this journey with my loved one. Help me to trust you. May my caregiving be a blessing to the one I love and thank you for the blessing I have received as their caregiver. You are the source of all life and grace, and I cannot do this alone.