Monday, September 21, 2009

Visit with Dad.... No 1

Well, can i just be candid for a moment? My dad looks like crap.

That out of the way, let me try to explain to you what everyday around here is like.

He wakes up around 8 or 9 am. We get him up, and help him shuffle to the bathroom. Hopefully he can go........ if not we shuffle back to the bed and dress him.

......He needs a diaper full time now, he can not adequately express to us sometimes how he needs to get to the bathroom, consequently... he has many more accidents. This is frustrating to him, because he would like his bathroom time to be much more private than it is... but with the fear of him falling... or the need to clean him, alone time on the potty for him... is a thing of the past.....

After getting dressed. we shuffle to the kitchen for breakfast.

.........the shuffle is a walk that is fully supported by my mom in the back with her arms up under his arms...and with someone in the front supporting his arms and encouraging him to walk forward.....

Then we get to try to have him take his pills. This is a challenge... today we spit out 6 different ones..... so we gave up. At least the important one went down... his Coumadin (blood thinner).... anything past that important pill is gravy.
Some days he can feed himself, others he needs to have someone help. Along with cereal, he has a protein shake. He will sit and watch some TV for awhile, and then he gets tired... so shuffle to the bathroom, and then back to bed by 12 for a nap that is 2 to three hours long.
repeat the breakfast process minus the pills, and you now know what dinner is like. He is in bed by 8 or 9 pm. Sometimes earlier. There is usually now a middle of the night accident. So mom is up and cleaning him once or twice a night.... and she is so tender and sweet when she does it. Those cleanings require someone else to get up and help, because she can't move him and remove the pads and such alone.

Walking in to this life........ so drastically different than when we were here in May.... was hard to see.... It is exhausting work. There is never a moment alone, never one with out total vigilance, never really a time to even sleep without one ear or eye open for fear he will get up, and hurt himself.

Awhile ago, i posted about how we try to define "fine" when talking about dad.... in my opinion.... this doesn't even come close to "fine".... this is bad.
Yet, this is where we are......... and care for him is what we must do. It is our turn to give back to him all the love and generosity that he has shown to us, and others all his life. Our chance to be tender, and show him Christ's mercy, as we care for his most basic of life's needs. Pray for us all as we walk through this valley of life with dad.... knowing that not for one moment are we alone.... Our Shepard is with us..........always.

Psalm 23


  1. i'm sorry to hear it's not in the fine stage anymore.. i know that's a lame statement but i don't know what else to say... i've got some lame chritian sayings in my pocket, but i know that's not what you need, so i'nstead of writing all that i'll just tell you i'm praying for you and your fam who are taking care of him as well as praying for him. and not lame prayers... for real prayers. i love you.

  2. Julie- I have no words, honestly. I've never been through this and can only imagine how painful it must be to see a man, who, from all I've heard has always been so strong, and such a 'hero' in everyone's lives. He is blessed to have such a loving wife and children, and grandchildren. I know that God is giving everyone the strength to get through this. I can only pray that His will be done. Many hugs and tons of prayers. ~lisa

  3. Julie now it is me with tears streaming down my face, as I read this and past blogs. I did not know of this. I was up close and involved 2 years ago watching one of my dearest friends die. It is so hard to see the changes for the worst. To deal with the intimate issues. Frustration for the person who can't do anything sbout it, and for the one who has to. Life is hard. Very hard. Alone no you're not.Does that always help? Not always.Your Dad is so special to so many,including me. You are being prayed for so often. For strength for this journey you're on.All aspects of it. Now about the sacrifices you and others like you make. I know the price payed in many ways My Mom lost her Dad at 14.A man we'll never know. The price these families pay, because they come back different. Because they have been through so much we'll never know. Good and bad choices get made by both sides. Am I thankful? You bet I am. Thank you Jody and all the others who serve. That is where our freedom comes from.I don't forget! Just so you know I love you and am sorry you have to go through this. But I also know you all would do anything for your Dad. So it is what it is and you go minute by minute sometimes. Keep going girl it does matter. Prayers do make a difference, that is why we pray!

  4. Julie, I'm so very sorry. I remember your Dad's smile and fun personality with fondness. I'm so sorry this is the new normal but I know that you know through even the valley of the shadow our God is good all of the time... And he spreads a table for us in the presence of our enemies. I believe God is using your mom and you all to spread that table for your sweet Dad, sticking it in Satan's eye because wouldn't he love for this thing to undo you all? But by God's grace he will have no such pleasure for the Shepherd's rod and staff are your comfort... That rod is for beating off the enemy. Your humble and loving service to your Dad is proof.... As he sets this table for you all may we look ever forward to the prize, the great feast when all will be made new. God bless.


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