My dad had been declining since his big fall on Friday. He ended up back in the ER yesterday. This afternoon I had a conversation with the doctor about decisions that will need to be made regarding his care once we see if or how much he may recover. After our talk I had to walk, so I roamed the halls of the hospital and came to the chapel. I went in and sat down facing the tabernacle. After about 2 minutes, the chaplain came in, arranged some things, and asked if I wanted to talk. I did. During our conversation, we compared raising children to caring for parents. I said it is easier to raise children as you are joyfully and hopefully preparing them for the next phase. As the words were coming out of my mouth I was made aware that caring for parents is exactly the same thing. I was humbled that God would use my own tongue to enlighten me. The chaplain said he would put my dad on the list to visit. Then he prayed with me. I was so grateful.
I Found God today getting a spiritual perspective.
As my mom and drove down our street this morning, we met my daughter in law at the stop light just by chance. She was heading to my the school. My mom spotted her before I did. We talked about how it is still surprising to see her here. And to be in the same place at the same time was just funny and joyful.
I Found God today in the joy of seeing my daughter in law so close.
My mom and I made it up to see my dad this afternoon. He looked pitiful but got in a chuckle or a smile every now and again. I spoke with the director, caregivers, and his PCP. I was surprised to learn that by law the doors to the courtyards must remain unlocked at all times for the residents. However, now they are alarmed so whenever a door is opened, the caregivers get a notification and someone responds immediately to make sure all is well. I saw the new protocol in action while we were there. I was amazed at how often people go outside. It was discovered that my dad has a UTI which can explain his recent irratic behavior and he is on antibiotics. Hopefully that will help him feel better and calm down soon. They are keeping a good eye on him and felt very bad about what happened. I was happy to see some positive resolutions taking place.
I Found God today in positive resolutions.
It’s been a rough couple of days. On Friday afternoon, I was able to finally get my COVID booster. Planning ahead, my sister was coming to stay with my mom and I for the weekend. It had just started to snow when she left for her normal 1 1/2 hour drive. Just as my mom and I finished dinner, I got the call from my dad’s facility. They found my dad on the ground outside. He was conscious but freezing and banged up. The paramedics were called and it was decided it was best for him to go to the ER to get warmed up and checked out. I was starting to feel the ill effects of the booster and the roads were already an icy mess. I knew I wouldn’t be able to go and be with him. I called my sister who was still driving after almost 3 hours and she said she would go to the hospital. My mom and I prayed the rosary. She used the beads she received from her friend who bought them and had them blessed in Rome. I used beads my friend gave me that were present in Fatima for the 100th anniversary of the Miracle of the Sun and were blessed by the pope. When we finished, I checked back in with my sister. It took her another hour on treacherous roads before she made it to the hospital. It was a long, stressful, sleepless night for everyone. I took and made phone calls as my temperature soared and my body ached. My sister made sure my dad was cared for while my poor traumatized father acted out. The last thing we wanted was a repeat of a few months ago when he ended up restrained and over medicated. After hours of tests and observation, they found no serious injury. At 6:00 in the morning, my dad returned to his facility and my sister finally made it to our house. My mom was up an hour and a half later. My sister and I knew there was no way either one of us would to be able to function. I called my son who came over and “grandma sat” while my sister and I tried to recover. Exhausted and ill, I asked God how much suffering he thought was necessary for my dad – and how much he thought we could all endure. I remembered the story of Job and God’s response which was basically that He knows what He is doing. No explanation. I started praying in thanksgiving that my dad was not hospitalized, for the medical staff, that my sister was with him and home safe, for my son, and anything else I could think of. I prayed another rosary and the Divine Mercy. I prayed until I ran out of words. Then I found an online live stream of Eucharistic Adoration. I wondered if that actually “counted”, but was reminded that God is everywhere all the time and was able to doze. A little while later I received a text from a friend quoting Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” She had no idea what was happening and how timely her note was. When I thanked her, she said she was heading to Mass and would pray for me and my family. What an unexpected blessing. Our favorite caregiver was with my dad yesterday, which was another answered prayer. I knew she would keep a close eye on him and she kept me informed as to how he was doing. He had a difficult day yesterday, but our second favorite caregiver told me he was doing better today. While we have had to get through yet another painful experience, I realized that I was completely incapable of doing anything at all to help the situation. But, others were – my sister, my son, my friend who brought us all to Mass, trusted caregivers. I really am not all that powerful. Thank God He is.
I Found God today in another difficult situation.
I had not met with my prayer group since before Thanksgiving, so it was nice to get together with them online tonight. People had similar stories about being with some family over holidays and then not because of COVID. We had a thoughtful discussion about the scripture reading for the upcoming Sunday- the story of the wedding feast at Cana. One thing we talked about is how the servants at the wedding did what Jesus told them and with their cooperation, Jesus performed a miracle. So it is with us. If we do what Jesus asks us, even though it seems ridiculous, scary, or difficult at the time, He can work wonders in our situation. We concluded our time with a lot of prayer requests as there is a lot of suffering and need these days. I felt again blessed to have this spiritual support.
I Found God today in spiritual support.
I have been dragging the last couple of days – physically, mentally, energetically. Perhaps it’s coming off the holidays. Perhaps I’ve been neglecting to do what I need to take care of myself. I suppose that’s why it seems necessary to make a new year’s resolution. In any case, I resolved to get my diet back in order and started a couple days ago. And last night I went to bed right after my mom. She slept well during the night, so I did too. I woke up surprised that it was actually morning. After my prayers, water and stretching, I was happy that I was feeling better. I was most grateful that continued through the day.
I Found God today feeling better.
I have been reading the book of Sirach which is jammed packed with practical wisdom and advice on daily living. It is interesting how thousands of years go by since this was written and it applies to us here and now. I guess we human beings haven’t come as far as we would like to think. There are several verses regarding when to be silent. Perhaps I have been pondering these instead of blogging… I’m not quite sure. There is much to meditate upon in this book for sure.
I Found God today pondering the wisdom of Sirach.
A couple that I know are going through a very rough time. He let me know last week that he had COVID and experiencing shortness of breath. Two days later he told me his wife was hospitalized with an intestinal infection. She wanted to avoid surgery, so was being treated with heavy duty antibiotics through an IV. My family and I and many others have been praying for them. It was most difficult that they were both unwell and unable to be together. Today the husband told me he got another COVID test and it came back negative. He was starting to feel better and was relieved for the results. His wife was responding to the antibiotics and the doctors were going to switch to taking them orally. It was good news. They are hopeful that she continues to do well and that they can see each other soon.
I Found God today hearing my friends are getting better little by little.
This morning it was 4 degrees outside when I got up and opened the blinds. It had snowed just a little overnight. When I looked just right in the sunlight, I could see shimmering speckles in the air. It was soothing and lovely, so I just watched for a while. When my mom got up a little later, she said it looked like someone had sprinkled snow glitter all over everything. That was a beautiful description.
I Found God today in snow glitter.
This morning I was thinking about my dad’s care, which I often do. I still hope for that perfect answer. I was wishing there could be someone whose only task is to look out for him 24/7. Of course, I know God is. So is his guardian angel. I have a pill reminder app on my phone that I set up for my mom and my dad. I have left my dad’s reminders on and now every time it goes off, I pray for him. Recently, I have taken to praying to his guardian angel as well. I use the guardian angel prayer, but substitute “his” for “my”. I pray for him to be at peace. Today when my mom and I went to visit, we were greeted by our favorite caregiver. She said that she recently got a “lead” position. That means that she will be there 4 days a week for 12 hours each day. She will keep a good eye on my dad. She is our human angel. I was thrilled and left with a little more peace as I thank God for this gift.
I Found God today having more peace with my dad’s care.