A nursing home is one of those places where a good laugh is always much appreciated. Here’s how I get one. It never fails.
Having visited my aunt on the second floor, I board an elevator crowded with staff and patients, one of them in a wheelchair; and after the doors close and we start moving, I look down and say, “Oh, no! I dropped my snake.”
A little Korean nurse cries, “What!”–and everybody laughs. And then she laughs, too, and we’re all still chuckling when we arrive at the next floor.
Patty and I went to the nursing home this morning to see my aunt.
Every day, for a long time, I prayed God not to let my aunt run out of money and have to go into a nursing home. God did not see fit to grant that prayer.
I’m glad He didn’t! In fact, I’m so glad, I could just about cry.
Today my aunt did more talking than she has for two or three years. Today she smiled at me for the first time in at least two years. She was well-groomed, looked more comfortable than she has in quite a while, and they’d put her in a portable bed and moved her out into the hall to socialize with other patients. She has made friends there who come in and chat with her several times a day.
This much stimulation has done her a world of good. And it has re-taught me a lesson that must be learned again and again:
The ambulance finally appeared, and my aunt was transported to the nursing home and installed in a semi-private room where the other patient had a great big TV set which was playing Spanish soap operas.
We’re all upset, we prayed it wouldn’t come to this: but it has, and there was nothing we could do avert it. Poor Aunt Joan. For most of her life–she never married–she and her sisters traveled to almost every country on the planet, back in the 1950s and 60s when people didn’t just hop on a jet plane and go wherever they pleased. You had to have a lot of get-up-and-go, to be a world traveler back then.
There is something wrong with the way our civilization today handles the closing chapter of a life.
Well, there’s nothing for it but to trust in God, who tells us nothing but what is altogether true, and who will keep His promises. Whatever may afflict us now, it’s temporary. When we wake in God’s Kingdom, in His house of many mansions, we’ll be hard-put to remember what was hurting us.
Well, we’ve been to the nursing home and now we’re back home because we have to find out where my aunt and the ambulance have got to. They weren’t at the nursing home when they were supposed to be. Sometime today we also have to buy groceries. Then we’ll have to go back to the nursing home.
It seems the ambulance simply failed to show up when it was supposed to. It was scheduled for 10 a.m. and now it’s 11:30 and no one has seen the bloody thing yet.
I hate these hellzapoppin days in which you run back and forth and all around and nothing happens, nothing gets accomplished.
Hopefully I will be back this afternoon with everything done.
I’ve been distracted, lately (to put it mildly), by one of those unavoidable tribulations of life.
Without getting too much into private details, I’ve had to have my last surviving aunt transferred to a nursing home. This is something we prayed would never happen, but now it has.
She is the last of my family in her generation. When she goes, I’ll be the oldest one left–and who ever thinks he’s going to be that?
My mother had five sisters, so I was richly blessed with aunts. Two married, one became a nun, and three stayed together at their father’s house, where they were born. One by one they died. The house had to be sold. It has since been torn down. My aunt received the best care available for as long as possible. But now it’s no longer possible to take care of her outside of a nursing home.
We could not live without God’s grace. But then without God’s grace we never would have been created in the first place.
Normalcy is a good thing. Writing is the work I asked the Lord to give me to do, and He granted my prayer. So I will do it, to the best of my ability, every day if possible, for as long as I can.
God goes with us into the Valley of the Shadow. And one way or another, He will bring us out of it, and into the light.
Readers, please bear with me: normal service will soon be restored. If the next few posts aren’t up to snuff, don’t go away–there’s plenty in the Archives.