I have been wanting to write this post for a week or so now, but couldn’t seem to find the right words or the right time. Today seems like a fine time.
The past couple weeks were filled with celebrations.
Mark’s birthday in June, was the beginning of the World Cup soccer tournament. This World Cup was especially fun for Mark because not only does he love the sport (still playing once a week), but the games were held in South Africa where he grew up. So we watched lots of soccer and being loyal to Mark’s heritage, we cheered for the House of Orange (Holland) who made it to the final game.
Last week was also Amber’s thirtieth birthday and at Jesse’s request, Veronica and I drove down to Naples where they were spending the weekend and surprised her. We enjoyed lunch, shopping and a movie while Jesse hung out with Jaxson. Always good to be with my girls.
And last week was a milestone for our family. One year ago on July 4th we were faced with a difficult decision. Dad’s parkinsons came to a place where he had to be admitted to the hospital. If you are a new visitor, you can read about it here. July 10th, 2009 was the day we celebrated that Dad was released to a wonderful nursing facility.
It hardly seems possible that it has been a year. In the beginning we and the doctors did not feel we had much time left with Dad. But God had other things in mind. We are grateful for so much… the gift of time we have been given, the good care Dad receives at a clean and cheery facility, the blessing of new friendships, and the opportunity to be a light, just to name a few.
Dad is stable.
Compared to one year ago he is improved. Although we do see some progression of the disease… he is sleeping more, he will go a few days without eating much due to sleeping, and he seems a bit “further away” to me. And it’s harder to catch that great smile of his in photos.
Mom is doing well.
She makes her trek down to be with Dad every day, lovingly overseeing his care. She has become a friend to many at the facility, often being an advocate for those who have no one. Dad is so blessed to have Mom as his wife!
I will be honest… it’s not been easy at times. It still takes emotional discipline to not become sad, angry, or discouraged sometimes when I see Dad in his condition. It does not make “sense” to me. I do ask God why, from time to time. I do not get an answer, but instead a gentle hug that says, “trust me, my ways are perfect”. So I do. And I am quick to recognize that I am able to trust, not because of me, but because God answers your prayers. So from the bottom of my heart, to those of you who pray for our family ~ THANK YOU!
This past week I baked some cookies for Dad’s caregivers,
and reflected over the past year realizing how much we have been given.
A batch of cookies seems such a small way to say thank you, but I think they were blessed.