I have probably tacked this verse onto the beginning of posts more often this year than any other. Have you put on your love today? This past year, I have had to start over time after time, day after day. As most of you know who read my blog on a regular basis, we are working on year two of Elaine's Mom living with us.
It's been tough, to say the least. Hygiene is an ongoing issue more and more. We are working on week 4 with no shower, again. The last time, Elaine had to physically get in the shower with her because she refused to put water on her head. And she was washing with shampoo. Incontinence is also a problem. She refuses to wear the undergarments so bedding has to be changed often....laundry done several times a day.
Because she has been increasingly combative, her dose of Anti-psych drug was doubled just this past week. We noticed the rage has been just barely contained....it's always just under the surface. The pacing and the agitation seem to go hand in hand.
It is disheartening and sobering for Elaine to realize that right now if her Mom were not on the Seroquel she would be in a lock down unit as we speak. Her Mom still knows very well where she is, but when her Doctor tells her that if she won't let people take care of her she has to go somewhere where they can, he is met with indifference, a shrug of her shoulders.
It has been a constant challenge for both of us to do that "putting on love" thing Paul is talking about. And I am on another trip to California to see my family on Sunday. It's hard to be the one always left behind. For two years, she has had to watch others travel, go on weekend trips, vacations. That is what caretakers face every day.......for them life has stopped. They feel just as chained as if they were in stocks.
And how can life still feel like it's at a standstill, when the workload never stops?
Please pray? For wisdom, and strength to bear up. To keep laughing somehow. To know when to say "when."
Pray for strength and grace for me as well. That I can be the right kind of support. Too often I feel like the check marks on my own personal report card are screaming out a big red "fail." But God knows my heart, thankfully.
I take comfort in the fact that He hears my prayers of forgiveness uttered after every exasperated blown out sigh......He knows we are all dust after all, nevertheless a kernel of God keeps us all preserved for eternity.
And more and more and more, we are craving the peace, the harmony that used to fill the house. We still have it for the most part, we just have to fight for it where before it was effortless.
Here is the magic formula that works for any and every situation:
Love + Peace = Harmony
I will need until every last breath to put it into practice.