Thursday, April 10, 2008

THE ROAD NOT CHOSEN

On January 18, I posted about The Days of our Lives, and how my life seemed to be divided into sections, and that we were heading into a part of our lives that was unknown to us. We are now living that part of our lives, and had we the choice, we would not have chosen to travel this road in a hundred years. In a thousand years.

My mom is experiencing memory loss, and I am experiencing the loss of my mom. Oh, I know that the aging process often involves the stages of forgetfulness and confusion, but it shouldn't be happening to my mom. My mom should be able to identify everyone in that photo. My mom shouldn't have to ask, maybe four or five times, who is coming tomorrow, or what time we leave for church. My mom would know the name of her bank or the roads to take to the grocery store. And my mom would stay the same way she always was, a bright, interesting, fun and loving woman, the one person I could rely on to always be there for me and who would always take care of me.

But God in His infinite wisdom apparently has other plans. We can't argue with Him, as we have been taught, by our mom, to trust in the Lord with all our hearts and that He will direct our paths. This is where we are now. Trusting. Trusting Him. Trusting each other. And asking mom to trust us as we make decisions for her. We are now taking care of our mom.

The past couple of months have been spent making plans to move mom, and my youngest sister who lives with her, to a new apartment where she will be safe and where help would be available if needed. We are sorting through mom's things, agonizing over what to keep, what to discard, what to gift to others, and we are asking mom to make many very difficult decisions about things that she considers treasures. It is extremely hard, and often I return home tired, upset and confused, so I can in some small way imagine how confused mom is.

Only a bit over a week and we will have the big moving day. I pray my siblings and I are doing the right thing. I pray we can get mom settled in quickly, and that the confusion will lessen and she will quickly adapt to her new home and that she will be happy living there. I pray we can have our old mom back for just a little longer. We still need her.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm sure sorry to hear that you are going through this with your mom. I don't think any of us are ever ready to move into the role of parenting our parents. There's nothing that feels natural about that. I lost my only brother nearly three years ago. His wife died two years before that. They lived close enough to my parents to be of help when needed. He was six years older than me, and I always counted on him to be there for me to help when it came time to do what you are needing to do now for your mom. My only sister lives in Atlanta. My parents are in pretty good health and manage their lives just fine for now. But when I think about needing to make those decisions and eventually sorting through their things, it is overwhelming. I pray you have the wisdom from God and the encouragement from siblings to help you during this transition time.

Little Sis said...

Sister dear: When we were little, we held hands to gain confidence - and when you held my hand, I always felt safe from the bogeyman. Now we face a much more insidious bogeyman than we ever could have imagined. I am glad we are still holding hands, and we can face it together.

Linda B. said...

You have been on my mind more than usual this week. I cannot imagine what this feels like. Knowing what an awesome job you did parenting your children, God has given you the tools for making sure you do the right thing for your mom. I would trust you with my own mom. Hang in there! Hope to see you again soon-

Sage said...

Anonymous and Linda: Thank you for your encouraging words. As my little sis said "we held hands to gain confidence......and we are still holding hands." That is so true. There are five of us kids, 4sisters and our one brother. One hears about the horror stories among families dealing with stressful times concerning their parents. Well, I am so happy to say that we are all five on exactly the same page. There is no arguing or bickering here. Our only goal is to do what is best for our mother.

So you can say that we are all five holding hands, and the Lord is holding on to all of us. We believe in the power of prayer, and we are all praying the same prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, we ask You to keep our mom safe. Give us wisdom to do what is best for her. Give us strength to remain strong for her. And above all, keep us in our faith. With You we are safe, wise and strong, and we know You will never fail us. We ask this in Christ's holy name. Amen

Linda up north said...

I was so sad to read this post. Life sure can be hard and I am sorry you must go through this very hard time. I will continue to prayer for you, your mom and all your family. God bless you and comfort you as you take care of your mom. What wonderful daughters God gave her.