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.”

1 comment:

listening said...

Lovely and powerful- these tender, challenging moments could not have been predicted or imagined in our worst nightmares. I can however imagine some of what you are going through. Prayers for peace.
Watching my father 'disappear' is still fresh in my conscious memory, and deep beneath all that is conscious, on a deeper level my soul still longs to rewrite the end of his story and our relationship.
Where will we go but to the Lord?