Thursday, June 22, 2017

{the search for grace}

Another day, another mini stroke with my mom, and no, I'm not unfeeling.  Just can't invest as much personal energy to it as I did at the first, second and third ones.  Maybe we've hit 10 now since she's been here. This one occurred around the time she was getting dressed this morning, causing her to drop her coffee afterwards on her rug.  Mumbling a bit when middle daughter talked to her.  Sadly these spells are coming closer together, possibly signaling an impending stroke.  Or maybe not.  She could go on this way for quite awhile.  Bet not.  It's just too much.  I tell her aide and nurse and they just nod their heads.  Nothing to do.  You can medicate till the cows come home, but the inevitable will happen.  Praying for Grace.

Listening to Mandisa's newest CD, Out of the Dark (Deluxe Edition).  Partial to Back to Life and Prove Me Wrong.  Such great words.  I was intrigued to read the story behind the music. The unexpected death of her close friend to cancer rocked her world to the extreme.  They thought the friend's healing would occur here, but God had other plans.  Mandisa hold up and hid out.  She began overeating again, eventually regaining the 100+ pounds she'd lost, and added more on top of that.  I understand.  Sometimes it's just too much and you crawl into that comfort zone, that crutch that sedates you, no matter what it is.

I don't drink, smoke or do drugs.  I'm an emotional eater and I chain read.  Read that phrase in a recent book.  Chain read.  Hide in a story, try to find a safe place that separates me from my own life.  Thing is, finish the book, put it down and look life in the face again.  Works for a limited time only.

Facing stuff is the only cure.  Unfortunately.  An unending circle.  You always end up at the beginning again.

One day at a time.  My husband went through AA years ago, before I wandered into his life, and that catch phrase they use, One Day at a Time, is golden. 

Every night, without fail, I scold myself for losing patience with my mom.  For being edgy and being unkind in my heart.  Then I get up the next morning, listen to her dialogue which, pretty much, word for word is EXACTLY like the day's before.  Her, what they call, vascular dementia, makes her very limited in her conversation.  But thankfully, I think there's a tiny bit of contentment for her.  If she had her sharper mind of five years ago, she'd be climbing the walls.  Rightly so.

Her latest thing is something she does when I get her attention to tell her something.  If I just walk into her room talking, like I'd do with the kids, she gets startled.  Jumps.  So I walk in, pause, get her to know I'm there and then start talking.  Now she stops and listens, then frowns and has to ask me to repeat myself.  This is new.  Her attention span seems to be easily frustrated.  I've noticed a marked difference in her abilities to understand since her TIA a couple of weeks ago, which lasted about 45 minutes.  Remember that?  She's more confused.  More robot-like.  Easily upset, like when the dogs bark and she wants them to hush.  Of course they don't listen to her, but she gets very upset, not equal to the situation.

So tonight I'll fuss at myself for being resentful at having to tend to her needs.  For my bad attitude when she can't pull up her pants on the right side because her right side is the weak one.  For getting angry when she treats my girls like the help and my youngest son like a young god.  For expecting her behavior to be mature when it's very childlike.  Well, I'm not much better, being so resentful of my time having to be taken up with her.  Rolling my eyes.  Where's that Grace? 

Talk about a work in progress. If having my mom here is a test of my Faith and Submission to the Lord then I'm failing miserably.  It'd be awesome if I woke up in the morning and rather than dread seeing her and possibly helping her out of bed (if the girls don't beat me to it) I gave her a big hug and told her I loved her.  But I don't.  It's not that sort of relationship and hasn't been for years. 

Need to research some Forgiveness, eh?  Maybe some healing needs to happen before the Lord calls her home.  Maybe this isn't about her. 

Tensions are pulled tight.  Being asked to do the hard stuff with sometimes unwilling hearts.  Seeing my 3 girls stuffed into that 10x10 room (repeating myself).  Gracious they're sweet.  Hanging new pretty fabric curtains today to divide the room, so they each have some privacy.  Lord forgive me for struggling so.  For making such weak attempts at letting go of past stuff.  But thank you for a patient husband and wonderful children.  And dogs who comfort me. 

Maybe I need to forgive myself as well.


Come Away With Me said...

So many phrases come to mind - refined in the furnace, tried like silver in the fire, pruned hard so more fruit comes . . . it is very painful and hard to face. Nobody "gets it right" (or at least, I know I sure don't!) for lack of a better way to say it. . . grace, that word has been looming large in my heart and mind lately too. It's there, in the midst of the continual struggle. There's a little story about someone who once asked a monk what they do in the monastary. "Fall down and get up, fall down and get up . . ." was the reply. He's pouring out His grace . . . always. I pray we both begin to feel it and see it and find some comfort in it in ever widening pools of awareness, one day, one moment, at a time.

Charm and Grace said...

Two steps forward, three steps back... it's how I am feeling today, too. Yesterday was wonderful getting the "bandage lens" out of my eye and seeing with it a little better. Today is not so great... very dry and feeling like sandpaper. Maybe the dr. should've left the lens in a little longer... too late now. Or, maybe the numbing drops he put in yesterday have just worn off.

The curtains sound like a lovely way for your girls to have some semi-privacy. Really don't understand your mom's making such a difference between daughter/grandaughters and grandson/son-in-law. Weird. Did she have a really bad relationship with her mom and a wonderful one with her dad? Just can't figure that one out. Don't suppose it really matters why, you're still stuck with dealing with it on a daily basis. Again... praying for stamina, perseverance, and strength.