Where I am in the story is where we are right now. Mary is still at Rehab. She is "scheduled" to come home with us one week from today. How do I feel about this?....
...how much time do you have?
I have gone through a roller coaster of emotions over this whole thing. I have so much going on inside my heart and my mind and my spirit and my flesh all at the same time that I feel at times like I want to cry,...and I can't pinpoint why. I often think that if we hadn't felt such opposition from the rehab center, the emotions wouldn't have been so tumultous. For some naive reason, I thought it would be easy. There's a lot going on inside me right now and there is only one place to turn....and I'm SO thankful that I know where that one place is!
"As the deer pants for the water brooks,
So my soul pants for You, O God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God;"
"Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall again praise him
For the help of His presence."
The emotions I have been riding on have stemmed from many different avenues. They well up and come together like enormous waves crashing together in a wild ocean storm. Here is a taste of what's going on inside of me right now...
With my son in the middle of a war zone thousands of miles away, my "Mother's Heart" is tearing in two. It aches all the time. I still live life, of course, there is my husband who brings me so much joy and all of life around me that is to be lived. However, when I'm alone at night, I sit on the couch and pray, ...and cry, big fat tears. I am distraught over how distanced he has made himself from the Lord, and I am so deeply afraid that his heart is hardening. I cry out to God to save him, to soften his heart, to convict him, to never leave him....
I read in the paper just two days ago that a young Army man who was from nearby was killed in Afghanistan, my heart wrenched inside of my chest. My son is over there. My son. I cannot imagine losing him. But IF I had to lose him, I NEED to know that he is walking with Jesus, I don't have that peace right now, and all I can say is...it hurts...bad.
Add to that my husband. Who had a brush with death only a month ago. To look at him now, you'd never know it, unless he removed the bandage on his leg. The thought goes through my mind at how quickly he could have been gone. The emotions of that ordeal pulled me in so many directions. However, they subsided and he's healing well and back to work....but then there's work.
I look at my husband every day and am reminded of David. He is truly a man after God's own heart and I can see clearly the struggles that brings in the workplace. Godliness is not thought of as a leadership quality, no matter how great of a leader you are. Apparently this world desires a harshness, an ugliness, rudeness, brashness, short tempers and unkind words....these are qualities he does not possess. Oh how my heart aches for what he must endure each day.
Enter Mary. What a blessing. Truly, we have prayed over her, and this whole situation, both together and separately. We know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God has placed her in our lives. Because she is not closeby at this time, and hubby is back to work, we haven't been able to visit her as often as we had been,...and I miss her. I think of her sitting there and wondering why we haven't been by as often, and my heart breaks. I am so certain that caring for her is meant to be a blessing to us, and a way to serve our Lord. However, I am only half spirit, and as much as I am ashamed to admit it, I am often ruled by my flesh.
I have struggled over these few months with selfishness. Having her here will change our lives, I'm quite certain of that. However, at times, I push the beauty of it aside and get mopey. My husband and I live very 'spur of the moment' lives. We like to go out on our boat, we like to go for motorcycle rides, we like to run errands together and go grab lunch. That's all about to change, and I think in preparing myself for the reality of that, I have worked myself up.
I have become anxious of the unknown.
Will we never go out alone again? Will we be completely exhausted all the time? Will she become angry? Will our boat sit idle for years? Will I stand in the driveway and watch my husband ride off on his motorcycle because I can't leave? Will we never be able to act silly in our home for fear of waking her? What about Christmas parties and dinner with friends? Will I be able to care for her properly? Do I have the right skills to see to her needs? Will we have all the proper things in place to make sure she doesn't slip or fall? What about bathing, and dressing, am I capable? Will she be happy here? Will she want to go back to rehab???
The list goes on and on and on....then I sit and pray and ask God what's wrong with me. One moment I have such a peace, and then next I'm all in an uproar. He has put Mary in our lives, and I am convinced He has done it for us, not only for her. I believe He wants to stretch us, to grow us, mold us and change us. To teach us things we do not know. I am willing, but I struggle with these desires of the flesh, even though I don't want to.
Please don't get me wrong. I am joyful about this decision, and I am ready for this 'adventure' to begin. I have put much time into preparing a pretty room for her and planning out meals, outings, routines, etc... However, I am swayed by these ridiculous fears, and I don't want them to take hold. I am blessed that I see none of this in my husband. He is a rock, you know. He sees this only as a beautiful opportunity to do something for our Lord. His peace over this decision is evident. Oh to have his resolve...
The goal here is to make her life good. Whatever is left of it. To make it beautiful, peaceful, happy, fulfilling. I have a whole lifetime ahead of me to do the things I want, so what if we can't run out for lunch on a whim! We'll plan ahead, get a sitter to care for her for a few hours. It's not really about me right now, and I know that's part of the stretching. It's about Mary and what we prayed about for her. It's about seeing her smile again, having her sleep in a soft bed, sitting with her by the window to watch the flowers sway in the breeze, pushing her wheelchair through the neighborhood to see sparkling Christmas lights, reading to her from God's Word, giving her a piece of chocolate for goodness sakes! And allowing her to have some control over these last few years of her life...her golden years.
I know I have a sweet handful of praying sisters (and brothers!) in blogland, and I am so thankful for you all. Please pray for my son, please pray for Mary, and please pray for us...for me...that I would not be overcome with these unfounded fears, that my heart would be filled with peace. I covet your prayers.
The adventure begins in one week, and you can bet there will be to this story...
IF I have time to write it down! :)
"Man's steps are ordained by the Lord,
How then can man understand his way?"