Update on Us and a Few Thoughts

Dear Reader,

I don’t tend to post personal details, but I did let you all know some weeks back that we were dealing with some problems with my mom so I thought you deserved an update. My mom came for the holidays and ended up staying 2 months. She had a “catastrophic cardiac event.” Actually, it is good news that this is all she had because initially they told us her heart stopped and  she had a  stroke. So we are very glad that she did not have a stroke and the mental and physical impairment that usually brings. She was in the hospital for almost 2 weeks, 10 days of it in the ICU, then in rehab near us for 2 weeks, and then in our house for about 2 weeks, and then the kids and I drove her home (600 miles away) and stayed with her for a week. She has a brand new pacemaker and is temporarily living on her own but will more near my brother in April. So the first couple of months of the year were pretty chaotic for us but now things are settling down.

I also wanted to share a couple of things I have been thinking about relative to all this.

The first is about prayer. When my mom was here, especially early on when we didn’t know the extent of things, I found myself not praying very specifically. Now I did ask for prayers from others and I am very glad they obliged. But for myself, I found it very hard to pray for specific outcomes. I think knowing me that is a good thing though because my tendency is to tell God what to do through prayer, along the lines of “Lord, please let this and this and this happen.” And I wonder if anybody else ever finds that prayer is sometimes a way to worry; it is not giving up the situation to God but trying to direct Him in how I think He should best solve my problems.

The second thought I had was about personhood. This is something that has come up in terms of our children and how we need to respect and not violate their personalities as we seek to educate and train them.  But I am thinking about it now also as it relates to our parents. More and more of my friends seem to have issues with their aging parents, and it is very hard to find the line that makes sure they are safe and yet respects them as people who are able to make their own decisions. I am not a very pushy person. The fact that my mom is moving at all (and she decided to do so a year ago; the timing was just affected by this year’s events) is due to my brother who is more assertive. Now I am not saying this is the wrong decision for my mom. But I also think it must be really hard to leave the place your have lived for 50 years and move to a completely different environment more than 1000 miles away juts because one of your children lives there. I don’t think I would like that. I also wonder how I can raise my kids in such a way that they settle near me so I never have to face those decisions.



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