Wednesday, June 22, 2011

I Said, "AMEN!"

 "This is NOT my home!!!!  My home has a tree in the front yard!!"

Yesterday, I had one of those days.  I kept thinking that I needed to share my day with other caregivers, because I know you'll relate.

Let me stop here and tell you that Tuesday is my pray and fast day for my ministry. I’m not only a full time caregiver to my Mom, I'm also a full time missionary with a worldwide mission organization reaching over a million children every year with the Gospel of Christ.  I’m Director of my county and my job is to recruit churches to adopt their local public schools to have a once a week, hour and a half Good News Club.  

Now you’re probably wondering how I can take care of my Mom and have a ministry at the same time. Let me explain.  My office is in my home, so I can work anytime.  Also, I have people around me who are kind enough to help when I'm in a "pinch".  There is the sweet lady who lives across the street and is available whenever I need her.  Then there is Sarah Care, an adult day care facility.  And my sister is my back-up if I need one.  It's important to have a network...because it's important to take breaks. 

I'm learning to take one day at a time with my Mom, and I try to do the best I can with whatever comes my way.  God is my helper and He gives me the strength I need when I feel overloaded.  

It just so happens that yesterday I REALLY needed extra strength. I got up at 7:00A and got ready for the day.  I got Mother up at 8:00A and got her ready for the day....( showered, dressed, teeth in, breakfast, meds)....

It all started going downhill after breakfast while I was cleaning the kitchen.  Mother was SURE she was late for school. I assured her that I had called the school to let them know she would not be coming. I thought it was settled, so I continued cleaning up the kitchen. I started a load of clothes. Then, I heard her turning the doorknob. (Remember I have a bell on my doorknob.)  

“Mother, what are you doing?” 

“I’m going home.” 

Not again!!!  This can’t be happening again, I thought.

As she was waving to the neighbor (who was not there), a man came to the door. 

Ah Ha!...mother probably thought.  I can escape!

The Arrow Pest Control man was at the door to inspect the house for termites.  When I opened the door, Mother took the opportunity to escape...just like a little dog seeking it's freedom. Before I knew it, she was on the porch telling him that she lived across the street.  "Would you help me get home?"

I’m standing behind Mother waving at him with a silent, “NO!” 

He had a puzzled look, then he shrugged and proceeded to ask me if I needed him to inspect HER house as well (the one she supposedly lives in across the street).

“NO!  Just my house!  "She lives with me!" My face sobered and I quietly said, “You know dementia.”

“Yeah, Yeah, I get it.”,  he answered.  "My Grandmother had that before she died. She was mean as a snake.” He began to tell me some of the things she would do and say.  She even threatened his life!

I stopped him and said, “Okay okay. I understand.” I was thankful I didn’t have anything like that (although I had just threatened HER life if she even started to move off that porch).  Thank goodness she was waiting patiently. I told her as soon as he finished checking for termites that I would take her home. 

She asked, “What are termites?”. 


“We have bugs???”,  she hollered. “Well PRAISE GOD I’m leaving THIS place!!!!”  

“Not the kind of bugs you’re thinking about,” I assured her.  “These bugs eat wood -not people.”  I think she understood, although she looked a little confused. 

I had the door slightly open.  I watched through the window as she waited for the man to leave. Again I said, “Mother come in the house.  It’s too hot out there.”... 

“NO!”  “I’m staying right here!!!!”
This was one of those broken records that had the potential of lasting for hours, so I decided to just go with it.

When the man left, I got her walker and said, “LET'S GO!”  You guessed it...she headed for the house across the street.  But when she got close to the house, she unexpectedly turned right.  She didn’t go to the house she'd been looking at and pointing to day after day!  What WAS she thinking? 

My next door neighbor named Carol (her mom’s name is also Dot, her dog is named Katie- like my granddaughter. I don’t dare mention any of this to Mother because it’s confusing even for me) asked if I needed any help.

 “YES!  That would be great!"..  (She was sent by God.)

I realized I needed the wheelchair to get Mother back to the house because she was getting tired.. and I knew she wouldn’t have the energy to walk back home in the heat.  My neighbor continued to ask Mother about her house, while I dashed back to the garage.

I got the wheelchair...came up behind Mother and sat her down speedy quick.  This time, she didn’t refuse.  I pushed her back home while my neighbor walked along side saying, “That’s looks like your house over there with the two rockers on the front porch and the tree out front.”  

Mother was nodding (glassy-eyed at this point).

I pushed Mother up to the garage, went around through the front door, opened the garage door from the house, and said with a VERY excited voice, “THERE YOU ARE!  I’ve been looking everywhere for you!"... Mother’s face had a big smile and she said, "Praise God I’m home!".  I helped her in the house, gave her some cold water, and listened as she kept thanking my neighbor for helping her find her way home. 

With a big smile she said, “Thank God I’m home.  That OTHER girl wouldn’t let me go home!"..(ugh)

 I told her that the next time I see that "other girl", I’d have a good long talk with her! The NERVE!  (Sometimes even I wonder who I am!)

Before she went to sleep, she prayed for the wart on her chest (she meant the sore muscle in her chest bone when she pulled her muscle on Sunday morning....thank God it was nothing serious).  Then she prayed for the corn on her toe (I think she meant the corn on the cob we had for dinner.  She has no corn on her toe).  Then she said the sweetest thing,  “Dear Lord, Thank you for sending that kind lady to help me find my way home.  And one more thing, Carol loves You, and You love her. Help her with everything she has to do."  "Amen.” 

And I said… "AMEN!"

"This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:24


1 comment:

  1. Absolutely fantastic! Thanks for my morning cry and laughter! Book! Book! Book! It will be a "Best Seller!" Praying for you and "all" your ministries! Love you sweet friend! Rebecca L.