Leadership

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Overwhelmed

It's so hard sometimes.  Life comes at you a thousand miles per hour and you try to cope with it - just one task at a time, just one day at a time.  But it gets very tiring.  Sometimes you just have to say 'no' and take a break.  This past weekend my husband was away at a Men's Retreat Camp.  I didn't know if I would be prepared to make it through the whole weekend unscathed! Every day the anxiety is kept at bay with carefully laid out plans for the day interspersed with time for doing the things that keep me healthy. 

Like eating six times a day.  Do you have any idea how much time eating takes?  Somehow I resent it even though I know how important it is.  That's because when I don't eat I get shaky and start to get really irritable and depressed.  Gotta keep the blood sugar up!

And sleeping eight hours each night.  Do you know how hard that is?  I wake up at six am buzzing away with a rush of cortisol.  If I don't go to bed on time, I won't get enough sleep and then the anxiety will buzz away all day. 

Like sitting with the CES Machine.  45 minutes every day at least once.  Sigh....

For so long I've avoided spending much time on myself and have been running to take care of the kids, take care of Ed, take care of my mom, save the world.... That takes a lot of time and energy.

Giving myself a pedicure?  No time.
Doing my nails?  No time.
A bubble bath?  No time.
Getting my hair done... WAIT! I refuse to budge on that one! You just have to take care of the roots!

Then there's the organizational side of life.  I don't even like opening my bedroom closet.  God only knows what will fall out and hit me on the head.  Drawers are full.  Put the clothes on top. No room left on the bookshelf?  Pile 'em up on the night table, then on the floor beside the bed.

The only way to cope with this is retirement.  That won't be for at least another 15 years at the rate we're going.  Perhaps I'll win a lottery. Oooops! Don't gamble. Perhaps some obscure relative will die and leave me all his money.  Perhaps... heh, heh... perhaps not!  Well, maybe the Reader's Digest Sweepstakes?  Is that really gambling?

Oh well, I'm just going to have to continue to take it one day at a time. 

God, thank goodness you're here with me.  What in heaven's name would I do without you!? 

I ask you! 

SIGH....sigh....

grace... Kathie

Monday, September 21, 2009

Cherishing Mom

I thought I was prepared. Mom is going to be 89 in November and I thought, in a practical way, she's had a great life, survived breast cancer and already experienced a stroke. However, she's got some health problems and if it's her time and God chooses to take her home, then I'm ready for that. Every year at Christmas I think to myself, "Is this her last year with us?"

But I wasn't ready. I wasn't anywhere near ready.

When she had her stroke on August 28th I wasn't sure what to expect. She seemed to be trying to speak the next day and it looked promising. However, soon an infection set in and her lungs filled up with fluid from her heart not pumping properly. Then she just went to sleep. She wouldn't wake up and when we tried to feed her she just clenched her teeth and slept. So we waited, watched and hoped the antibiotics and other medications would work.

That was when I realized I really wasn't ready.

I prayed for God to either take her quickly or heal her - not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually. And I cried. And cried. And then cried some more.

I didn't want my mom to suffer any more. But I also didn't want to lose her.

Then she woke up. And every day she is just that little bit more alert. Her spontaneous words have become spontaneous phrases. She smiles, responds and seems to have been given a kick start. I can't believe how happy I felt. But I also felt a bit selfish.
So now we're waiting to see how much she progresses. That will determine her immediate future. Will she go to the rehab ward and then a nursing home? Or will her heart give up the ghost causing her to deteriorate?

Well, right now she's here. So I'm taking it one day at a time and praising God for every moment I still have her to love. So I'm asking God to help me love her the best that I can. I'm cherishing whatever time I still have to spend with her. Yesterday I fed her lunch and then sang some hymns for her. She closed her eyes and smiled while I sang. She loves music. I've been privileged to take care of my mom in my home for 11 years now. Every day has been a give from God. My children have had their Grandma and she has seen eight of her great-grandchildren every week and they've had a chance to know her love. God is so good.

If you're reading this post, please pray for my mom and pray for me and my family, that God will give us strength, courage and wisdom to deal with this time in our lives and in making decisions for my mom.

grace... Kathie