It always feels weird returning to the ol' blog after an absence. I don't know why. I guess I feel there won't be anyone left reading, or anyone interested enough to stick with me through these breaks in blogging. But, truthfully, I don't blog for others...not to the extent that some do. Sure, I want people to be interested in what I read, I want them to come back, I want to "inspire" in some way my readers, and I want this blog to be useful to me and others. But my blog has always been an outlet for the crazy mixed up jumble of thoughts and emotions I've dealt with as we've trudged through infertility, miscarriage, and life in general. Don't get me wrong, I love my readers and really really want you to continue to read...just please abide with me through the quiet times.
The past few months have been weird...hard in some ways, good in others, challenging in all ways.
My friend I mentioned in my last post has continued to fight like a dog against her cancer, and chemo has taken one Hell of a toll on her. She and her husband have a deep faith in God, and prayer and a strong community of supportive family and friends are getting them through. Please continue to pray for her.
My paternal Grandma passed away on December 13th. She had been in a nursing home for several years, suffered from Parkinson's Disease, and had recently begun having mini-strokes due to a large amount of blood clots that were forming in her body. Her passing was extremely hard on me, I was very close with her from a young age and used to stay with her during the summers for weeks at a time, up until I was a teenager. She was a woman of tremendous faith. Her main goal in life, as we all knew, was to get Home to be with Jesus, her parents, and her son (my father's twin who died at 13 days old of pneumonia). At the funeral, they displayed some of her belongings that she always had with her and that reminded us all of Grandma. Her Bible was one of them. I thumbed through it at the visitation. It was riddled with underlining, highlighting and notes in the margin. There were handwritten notes about her favorite verses and notes she took during sermons at church tucked here and there throughout. It was so awesome to see through these notes how she viewed and lived her faith, and I was shocked to see that a lot of the verses she had underlined and highlighted as her favorite verses were MY favorite verses as well. I so very much wanted to take her Bible after the funeral, but one of my cousins apparently requested it before I did and was given it. I'm sad because I would have loved to page through it once in a while and feel close to her again like I once did. (A neat side story...years ago when Grandma was moved into the nursing home, she gave us grandchildren some of her jewelry and personal items she thought we would like to have. I received a pair of diamond earrings that apparently I had given her (via my parents, I'm sure) when I was young. My sister received her mustard seed necklace that my Dad gave to her when he was a teenager or mid 20's. I remember Grandma wearing that mustard seed necklace every day. I used to sit on her lap and run my fingers over it and ask her to tell me the story of the mustard seed (Matthew 17:20) over and over and over. For Christmas I asked for a mustard seed necklace of my own. My sister, knowing how much it would mean to me, brought Grandma's to the funeral and gave it to me. I was floored and bawled my eyes out. I couldn't believe I was holding it again. I am so happy to have Grandma's mustard seed necklace, and I love how every time I wear it I feel like I'm a kid again, sitting in her soft squishy lap (we're all fluffy on that side of the family!), with her strong arms around me, telling me again with such love in her voice about the story of Jesus and faith the size of a mustard seed.)
Matt is still looking for work after his graduation in August. He had a job lined up, but there were some serious issues that came up that we just were not comfortable with, and he ultimately had to decline the job. The issues put him in a position that went against our morals and values, and we were not willing to compromise those for the almighty dollar. We are still getting by living on my salary alone, but still praying that God will lead him to the job he is meant to have. He does have several more leads, and puts out resumes weekly. Please keep him in your prayers for his employment.
My Granny, (my maternal grandmother), is still declining because of the Alzheimer's. I hate Alzheimer's. I HATE IT!!! I despise seeing my precious Granny, once so bright eyed and vivacious, a tiny spitfire of a woman, wasting away from this blasted disease. She has been getting worse over the past few months, and we've had to have her transported to the hospital by ambulance twice because my mom couldn't wake her up for over 24 hours and she was unresponsive and dehydrated. She sleeps most of the day. She rarely eats. She can't walk very well anymore, and she is very unsteady when she does walk. She cannot do anything for herself. My mom bathes her, cleans her after the toilet, dresses her, brushes her teeth, combs her hair, and sometimes even has to feed her when she just can't grasp how to do it anymore. My heart breaks every time I see her (which is usually once or twice a week...I give mom a break once in a while and provide "respite" care so she can go out with my dad or out to lunch with a friend, or just out in general). She has lost so much weight and is so fragile, and is basically non-verbal. She can't respond to questions. When she does, which is rarely, it's usually gibberish. Once in a great while she will respond to me. It's strange...we have this odd connection which I love. She still recognizes me, but doesn't know who I am or my name, but she "knows" me. Her eyes light up when I come in, and she either says "HI!" or mutters some gibberish which I assume is a greeting. (At this point, I'll take anything, as long as she's responsive!) I always, ALWAYS, kiss her on the forehead when I leave and say "I'll see you later Granny, I love you"...to which she will occasionally murmur "mmmhmmm". About every 4th or 5th time I'm there and I say this to her, she will open her eyes and say "Okay, good to see you", or "I love you too" (which MELTS ME!!!). The other day I was there and she actually looked me in the eye and said "Ok, be careful"! I laughed all the way home! This sounds horrible, but sometimes I pray for God to take her Home. She has no real quality of life. She sleeps 90% of the day, she is dependent on my mom for 100% of her daily needs, and she really has no idea of who she is or what's going on around her. We lost "Granny", who she was, what made her HER, years ago. What is carrying on now is simply her body. Yes, she has snippets of lucidity...but they are so few and far between... What I really wish for is a break for my poor mother. The only life she has right now is serving my grandmother. She considers it her duty, her call, but I see how hard it is for her. My heart breaks every day for her. Please, pray for us, and for my sweet beloved Granny. As devastating as it will be for me to lose her (truly...it will break my heart in a million pieces)...I can't stand seeing her like this. There is no dignity in Alzheimer's, it truly is one of the worst things a person can witness in this life.
So...that's where I'm at right now. There's some other things going on...but I think I've taken enough time for now. And since I'm feeling the need to go hold Grandma's necklace and look at pictures of me and Granny...I'll sign off for the night!
I hope you're all well...and I promise I will be back soon!