It’s been a minute or two since I have blogged. I haven’t had anything “nice” to blog about so I’ve kept my mouth shut.
Here’s an short run down of what’s been going in just in the last few months. My Pop was diagnosed with kidney cancer and had his kidney removed last month and is having complications. An anonymous someone very special to me received a diagnosis that we are all still reeling from. Two weeks ago, we were dealt yet another blow when my sharp as a tack 88 year grandma was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.
And then there’s Preston.
My Preston. I usually have the patience of a saint when it comes to him. He’s so used to having my undivided attention. And Hunter was my backup. Right now, Hunter is focusing on an internship that has him gone from dawn to dusk most days. It will be this way until the first of the year, at least. Preston’s world has been unraveled, to say the least. So has mine. I’m trying to work full time and keep all my balls airborne that I’m juggling.
The struggle is real.
I kid you not when I say that there are 4 members of my family that all have appointments with the same specialist within an 8 day time frame starting tomorrow. It’s also ironic that Pop texted while I had Preston at his heart doctor this past Thursday wanting to make sure all was ok. He had recognized our car as he passed by the parking lot on the way to an appointment of his own. We weren’t even in our hometown!
Me? I’ve been going through the motions…. checking off one appointment at a time. Surviving by literally putting one foot in front of the other some days. If I’m really, really honest with myself, I’m sure the depression word is in there. I’ve tried reaching out to certain people about the overwhelmingness of it all. All I will say is nothing good has come from reaching out to those that I did. I’ve found myself adding cement and mortar to the growing walls of bitterness and discouragement.
Again, the struggle is real. My own emotional state has backlashes. Preston. He doesn’t understand why I’m suddenly annoyed that I have to go to the drug store for the 3rd time in 3 days on account of poor planning. He doesn’t understand why I snap back when he questions for the 547th time why I turned left instead of right. I’m frustrated that he’s frustrated that he lost his wallet Saturday and we had to spend time backtracking and panicking until we found it. I don’t understand how a man can give you a very detailed explanation of who Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego are but can’t tell you what the Pastor preached on 30 minutes ago. I don’t understand how a man can go from baking bread one minute to slinging his walking stick the next. He doesn’t understand why I don’t always pick up his stick and try my best to make things right in his world again.
Truth is, I do understand. I’ve been the one constant that has taken him to appointment after appointment. I cried when the neurologist said he had to go on yet another psych medicine. I’ve met with the Neuro-psych to gain understanding on how his brain is a tangled mess of misfires. Doctor after doctor has explained to us how Preston can’t help it. He truly can’t. The one constant that I’ve known, is the look in Preston’s eyes. His love for me, mixed with fear, and all the other uncertainties of this journey. This chaotic life we call ours.
I’ve debated seeking mental help for myself. My hold back is the fear of addiction. The thought of a pill numbing me to the realities of my world are more terrifying than me trying to figure out a way to deal with them. I know that it would be easy for me to be an addict. And I can not allow that to happen right now. But please, no opinions on this…. I respect and love many, many people that are medicated. I know me and I know that I’m capable of being an addict and abusing any numbing medications.
I truly, truly believe that Jesus will pull me out of this Petri dish I’m in. He showed me that yesterday….. through my sweet Preston.
Actually it’s Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, and then Ruth.
Yesterday, on the way home from Church, Preston commented that he was in Ruth. I asked him what he meant said sense I couldn’t recall a recent sermon about Ruth. He told me that a few months ago, he started in Genesis and was working his way through reading the entire Bible. Yep.
Here’s a man that literally can not recall the sermon from 30 minutes earlier, yet he is reading the entire Bible. Why? Why go through the trouble? Especially if you have no short term memory.
All last night, I thought about that, and admired his discipline. And then it dawned on me that the Lord had a much deeper message for me through it. One, a simple scripture from Psalm 119:11. “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.”. Preston was a very spiritually disciplined man before we married and before the brain aneurysm. It was one of the many things I loved about him. He would often rise at 3 or 4 am in the morning to have his quiet time with the Lord. One of my fondest memories is of him sitting at the dining room table studying a little later than normal one morning. I’d woken 2 pre-teen boys up and noise filled the house. Preston was not to be perturbed or give up his study. He simply put ear plugs in and kept on with his time with the Lord.
Several weeks ago, I joined a Facebook support group for wives of TBI survivors. Worst thing I ever did. All these women do is complain and gripe about their husbands. Which I can relate and understand. Many of them drink to cope with the caregiver roles. Many of the brain injured spouses drink, and self medicate in order to deal with their own realities. Not a whole lot of Jesus in that group. You’re encouraged more to abandon or cuss out your loved one than to get Christian encouragement. I need to be careful what I let in those cracks of my walls. “Support” can be my downfall if it’s the wrong kind.
I’m reminded that Preston had hidden the Word deep in his heart, pre aneurysm. That’s the reason he is still hungry now and his moral compass has never wavered. I humbly thank God for that.
Then I’m reminded of who Ruth was. The Bible teaches us that all through her trials, she is a symbol of loyalty and abiding devotion. Ruth’s life was not easy.
With the help of my Father, I pray that I can be Ruth-like. Loyal and devoted in all times to those that I love most, my gentle giant, and my family. It’s time to get out of the Petri dish and quit focusing on the things that push me in it.
God constantly uses Preston and little things like this story as a source of so much encouragement. May I always listen with my heart. And may I always know that my comfort can be found in the ONLY one who will never forsake me, my Lord and Saviour.