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We’re in the trenches

dad-jude-pie-junkie

Sometimes in life, you’re down deep in the trenches, fighting hard, struggling to breathe. I’ve been here many times before, but right now we’re back in the trenches with my mom.

I was adopted by my parents as a newborn when they were in their forties. They’ve always said that I kept them young, but having older parents means that I’m in a stage of life right now fraught with new experiences. My mom, who has been in poor health for several years now and cared for by my dad, fell and broke her arm last week. But because of her myriad health issues and low stamina, it’s not just a broken arm.

And so it’s been a long weekend of new experiences. I feel like I’ve aged ten years in a matter of days, having to do things that feel uncomfortable and like I’m overstepping¬†my boundaries. I think it’s called the sandwich generation – raising your own family while taking care of your aging parents.

But my parents need us – all of us in our family – to help them right now. Mom will be discharged from the hospital into a skilled nursing care facility within a matter of days, so Dad and I spent the weekend researching and touring nursing homes. And can I be frank? It was sad. And depressing. And frustrating. Because NOBODY wants to feel out of control or like they can’t be in their own home.

But also? It was empowering to help my Dad and to feel like we could make a difference in this next step for my mom’s health. And amazingly, I felt a sense of peace. My dad and I walked many steps together that we’ve walked before for me in my myriad health issues. And I consider it my privilege to walk by them for this next step. The best part was feeling God’s presence with us along the way. I have hope for the future for Mom.

Simon told me a quote that he heard at a seminar not too long ago. He said that you can drop the ball of work, social obligations, volunteer opportunities, etc and all those balls will bounce. They can recover. But family is the one ball that can’t be dropped. It won’t bounce – so I choose us. All of this crazy awesome wonderful family.

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