This man was 81 years old when he entered my life four years ago. Not because he asked for my help, but because someone told him he could no longer take care of himself. From that point on, all life’s decisions would be made for him.
I watch the cruelty of your condition rob you of your memory and in your ability to be present for your life. In the beginning it didn’t seem to bother you, to have a constant parade of young ladies come and go. throughout your days. I suppose it would be most men’s dream, but not likely given these circumstances.
Mostly your days have been filled with laughter, song, dance and stories from long ago. Every meal prepared and served before you. All the domestic chores and shopping handled while you carry on thriving daily in familiar surroundings. You keep us on our toes, learning to not turn our back in case the over-exuberant you surfaces to be extra playful in the moment. Your vulgarity makes us giggle, advance attempts are harmless we’ve learned and in your nature, while your gentility warms our hearts.
It saddens me more now, your inability to be concise in communicating your ailments which ultimately have become your demise. It took the logical thinker to tell this emotional girl the right thing to do was to take you back to the hospital. This is your third time there now and they tell us it will be your last. The option to take you home to provide you with comfort care through the end of your life is going to be the final big choice made for you in the morning.
I left you there in capable hands for one more night. As I drove out to make sure your cat was fed and your property ready to receive your return where it will keep you for your final days, the personal sadness washed over me. I’ve learned through sudden tragedy what devastation can bring and also the fragility and value of life, but to be an assistant to God’s divine plan is uncomfortable in the very least.
Decisions on your behalf to be made next as we walked through the glass doors to the world outside. So much traffic busting at the seams as the hustle and bustle of last minute shoppers congest every road and I am desperate to make my escape.
At last I pulled over along the roadside of a massive hill overlooking our pretty little town. There I sat writing these words and watching the sun go down on this day. Its starting to turn colder as the storm begins to move in. I picture you lying in that hospital room, highly sedated, feeling no pain and now sleeping so soundly. I couldn’t help but think how alone you truly are and have been for so long. We have become your family, the only faces you have known, to love and to trust in these last year’s of your earthly walk. My thoughts, they turned to my own life as they often do during times like these, but somehow things feel different for me. Not sorrow for what lies ahead for you my dear friend, but sadness perhaps from the void that erupts when I go inside my head.
My heart has softened so over the years as clients come and clients go, but none have been quite as entrenched and made such an imprint as this man has. Maybe because I too can relate to that orphan type mindset. Though he presently can’t comprehend the difference of his current state of being, his heart it does understand.
I feel blessed having the honor to be an intricate piece and make even the smallest differences in your life. Tonight I asked God to please reveal to me the lesson and message He is showing me through this experience. Because all I feel as I look to the valley below, is alone, empty and blue. I never thought I’d be one of the many who can’t feel the merriment and joy that this holiday season typically brings. The cause is more than this immediate situation. Feelings stirred up from the residue left over
by the past and the fear that is induced through uncertainty.
The prayer is redundant, but God is unfailing, “Lord please fill me full with Your love and lead me down the path You have chosen especially for me. You’ve walked beside me over the mountains and pulled me up from the valleys below. Through You I am strengthened without I am weak. Remind me who I am in You, fearfully and wonderfully made. Amen”
Tomorrow we bring you back to the place you call home. Where you will live out the rest of your days until you lay down for your final rest to be with The Lord. I pray for your transformation of new comfort, exclusion of pain and wholeness you will one day know again.
Good night and God bless You always…