I have lived almost 75 years on this earth, over 50 of them with my husband Ron. I am also an RN. It is a long story of GOD’s grace and mercy. It includes joy and sorrow, plenty and want. We were gifted with four daughters, but our first did not survive the pregnancy. This sadness made us even more appreciative of the ones who did.
Our three daughters are delightful women and all in their 40’s, at least for a few more months. We have seven grands including two grandsons tossed into the mix of all those cute girls! Our family is scattered around the country: the Seattle area, St. Louis and here in Huntsville, AL where we retired near our youngest daughter and her family.
Our life has been spent in full-time ministry both in the US and overseas. Ron was a pastor when I met him. We have lived in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, where I grew up. Since then, we have lived in Mandeville, Jamaica, Miami, FL, Tyler, TX, outside of Peoria, IL (Hanna City) and now Huntsville, AL
We moved here in 2013 and in 2015, Ron had the first of four strokes. At least that is the count as of the end of 2020. He has now developed vascular dementia but functions pretty well as long as I am handy to keep a distant watch. By the time year one was finished and we knew what the outcome of his stroke situation was, I became overwhelmed with many details of the life changes we had. That is another way of saying I became very depressed. It was like a black cloud settled over my mind and soul.
After help from one of my pastors, I was able to listen to the truth God was speaking over me, rather than the lies that kept screaming inside my head.
What truth? That GOD loves me and is with me. I am not alone. I am not without resources. GOD has provided me all I need to bring Him glory in any circumstance.
When I write to caregivers, I write both from the perspective of a caregiver as well as the perspective of an RN who worked in a Rehab Hospital the last 5 years of my working life. I have come to understand more of the loneliness, grief, confusion, overwhelm, anger, and bag of raw emotions this journey carries with it. As we care for our loved one and give them support, we become aware of our need for support of all kinds. In some ways, we become stronger, but in others, we become more aware of our weakness and our need for help.
Finding hope in the Person and promises of GOD as we grab hold of His promises in light of who He is, has been helpful and encouraging. I hope it will be for you as well as you take this journey a day at a time…with Jesus.
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness,
through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,
by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises,
so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature,
having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.
II Peter 1:3-4 ESV