Wednesday, February 27, 2013

I wait...


Mom's surgery has left her cancer free!  
Our God is an awesome God.

Dad has returned from the VA hospital with new drugs for his Alzheimer's.
He rules from Heaven above.

The Hubs cancer has returned.
Our God is STILL an Awesome God. He STILL reigns from Heaven above.

 So, I will lay at His feet and wait ...

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The backside of Eden...

When I first started riding my pink bike I felt like I was beginning a journey that would hopefully never end. Learning life lessons should, well, take a lifetime, right? With the miles of country roads pedaled, meditation, prayer and stillness, among other things, began preparing me for what I’m now experiencing…
Mom’s cancer surgery has gone well. She is recuperating like a woman on a mission. However, just because you’re in one crisis, doesn’t mean another one isn’t nipping at its heels.  Two nights ago, my brother and I had to leave our dad at the VA hospital. He is deep into Alzheimer’s and because of the demands of mom’s surgery and the interruption of his schedule and comfort zone, his behavior had rapidly deteriorated into combatant mode. He had not slept hardly a wink since last Thursday; the day of mom’s surgery, and this past Saturday night was the last straw. My brother and I shared the ‘night shift’ with dad as we watched the man who raised us prowl around the house at 3 a.m. whimpering as he searched for his own mother in various corners of the house. 
If you will remember, old age wasn’t God’s original plan. In the Garden He supplied all we’d ever need. Food, companionship and love. He walked among the trees with Adam and Eve. Sat on the banks of the rivers He created and enjoyed their presence as a beaming parent . They were not going to die or age or get sick. It was a beautiful plan. Then… oh, well.
The silver lining of this experience is that God had a contingency plan for us. He gave us family. He gave us Jesus. He gave us a way to find our way back to the original plan. But first, we now must walk through the valley of the shadow of death, which I am convinced more and more is old age.  
Death and dying weren’t on the play list in The Garden. Dementia and cancer were less than ghosts. But God being God knew. He knew. So, here we are as rebellious teens caught in the net of our own making. Yet, He never gives up on us. He still sees our potential. He packed our bags with all we’d need. And, He stands on the ready to lead us through the backside of Eden.  
“I am your strength…I make your feet like the feet of a deer, enabling you to go on the heights.”

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

He came near...

Mama & Nellie Rose


If you’re a regular visitor to this blog, I apologize for my absence last week. My mom is sick. Her cancer has returned after five years clean. So, I hopped in the car and traveled the twelve hours to her doorstep. Her surgery is Thursday. You probably won’t hear from me then either. Life and love once again intervene.
Last Thursday I was sitting outside a PET scan room. Mom’s doctor asked me to be close by just in case she needed me. On the thick, heavy door to the procedure room hung a warning sign: Caution! Radioactive Materials. Every so often I could hear a low, mechanical hum, as another sign would light up over the door warning whomever, I suppose me, not to enter.
 I don’t think any 85-year-old great-grandmother should have to go through this, do you? Mom’s been through enough. She lost her own mother as a young child, a baby sister at the age of one, and out of eight siblings she is the only left on this earth.  Isn’t this enough loss and sadness for one person? She survived the Great Depression and has lived through every war and scrimmage our country has been involved in since WWII. Let her be! She should be sitting in a rocking chair cuddling Nellie Rose, her two-month old great-granddaughter. She should be working with her roses in the back yard, putzing in her kitchen and baking yet another lemon pie or a mess of beans. What she should not be doing right now is lying on her back while some toxic radioactive materials scan her body looking for cancerous intruders. Enough is enough.
As I sat in the small cluster of waiting room chairs, I suddenly felt a Presence. He came near and I was no longer alone.  I knew at once that the thick door in front of me and the flashing sign above were no match for Him. Beyond the door my mama laid on a narrow scan bed with her head wedged and her arms secured around her body by a large Velcro belt. But it no longer mattered. He came near. He would take it from here.
Grace and mercy is His to give. Comfort and peace are held in each Holy Hand. So, I waited outside the thick door knowing all would be well… even if my mama wasn’t. He came near… to stay.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Go be a family...


Okay, yesterday got by me without it even dawning on me that it was Thursday.  When I laid my head down on my pillow last night I realized I hadn’t posted a Thursday blog. Maybe two people noticed, if that. However, I have a good excuse. I spent the day with Nellie Rose and her big brothers, Cormac and Cian.
Life is about choices as you well know. And, while there were all kinds of things I could have been doing yesterday, writing a blog for starters, I chose Nellie and her brothers.  Here’s a review: I experienced smiles and cooing from Nellie Rose for the first time. She’s two months old you know, those are big deals; Cormac taught me how to shoot his bow and arrow. He’s three. It’s what he’s into these days. And, Cian and I had a lovely ongoing conversation about why I was there and his Papa wasn’t. He’s not quite two yet, but a real man’s man, and Papa’s boy.
It was a sweet day. Sorry, I went AWOL. But if I have a choice between playing with grandchildren or staying home and writing a blog, chances are I’m going to choose the kids. Please don’t be offended. You are important to me and if you coo-ed as sweet as Nellie Rose, well…
Today, it’s back to writing and laundry and vacuuming and whatever. But first things first, and yesterday that first thing was Nellie Rose and her brothers. And you know what? I don’t expect anything less from you. The people in your life should always take first billing. God may have created people last, but He didn’t intend for us to be in last place. Oh, no,  He saved the best till last and we came with instructions: “Go be a family.”  
Okay, I’m outta here. See you next Tuesday…