More than ever this week, I’ve wished this was an anonymous blog. I’ve wished it all year, because it’s been one of those seasons of having so much to say and not being able to say it. So on my favorite place to write exactly what is on my mind, when I go to write I end up talking grammar and other safe topics. Good grammar is on my mind, don’t get me wrong, but my head is full and this has always been my outlet. It’s been sad to feel like I’m, in a sense, avoiding this blog.
This year hasn’t been all bad~ there has been so much wonderful, but sometimes even great things have to be kept private. That being said, there has been a steady stream of hard lessons learned, gross life junk and altered relationships all along the way that would probably make for a multitude of fantastic blog posts. I’m being rather sarcastic, even though it’s the truth. It really would have helped to talk about it on here, feel the relief of writing it out and also get your input.
I’m not really going anywhere much further with that train of thought, only to say it’s why I’m here so rarely these days. I miss writing more often (so much!) but when I start a post, the things that want to come out aren’t so Girly Muse friendly.
Today, I will give you a censored version of an ongoing struggle…
I’m still in Arkansas and my dad had an awful day yesterday. We were up in the wee hours of the morning praying for him and trying to get him comfortable. Thankfully, he finally fell asleep when the chest pains subsided a little. Normally, we would have gotten him to the hospital in a hurry after 2 nitro, but he had been feeling like he couldn’t even make it to the hospital. It was really scary, so it felt miraculous for him to sleep and I’m grateful that by the time he went to bed last night, he was so much better. In the meantime, my grandpa has been suffering~ he keeps falling and each time is more affected. He didn’t know Greyley this visit. Yesterday, he didn’t know me half the time. He’ll say something that makes sense and in the next minute, he’ll be talking nonsense. But beyond that, he’s in pain and not able to take care of himself.
My grandparents have been amazing in their ability to care for their home and their yard. You can’t believe the gardens they’ve had. They’re both in their mid-80s and have suffered every disease known to man, but have always worked unbelievably hard. My grandmother’s health hasn’t been the best either and on Monday, we were at her doctor, trying to get relief for her too. They’re both struggling and it’s awful to watch. I’ve left bawling each time I leave their house this week.
Downsizing, Assisted Living and Nursing Home…these are the topics that have been on the table for a long time. And whew, it’s a complicated, volatile conversation.
The stress of it all has taken its toll on my dad and he cannot do it any longer. He’s the kind of man who took my other grandfather, who had Alzheimer’s, into our home and cared for him until the day he died. He was the one called when his pastor’s mother was getting sicker and eventually put in the nursing home. Some days she only wanted my dad and he was there faithfully. He was the one holding up my mom’s mother when she was struggling for her last breath.
With his parents, he has taken care of them at the expense of his own health. Again and again and again. And while he has the ability to say no, it is not in his nature to turn his head when someone is suffering. So he just keeps on~X, Y, Z, you name it, he’s doing it~ with my mom right alongside him.
So I come to town and go all Mother Bear for my parents. It’s hard to explain it any other way than that because I’d never felt such a FIERCE love until I had kids. I loved and I loved hard, but not fierce, until them. I didn’t dream I would ever be the one to have to have this conversation, but you know what they say…I guess things happen for a reason. And initially, I didn’t say anything that their kids haven’t said to them already, but I had it out with my grandmother yesterday, confronting her about getting help for Grandpa.
My little 84-pound grandmother is strong and mighty. I realized yesterday that everyone in the entire family is afraid of her.
It’d be hilarious if…well…I don’t know when it’s hilarious at the moment.
My grandma has always called me the sweet one, but after yesterday, I’m not so sure she’ll ever speak to me again, much less call me sweet. I’ve never had one cross word with her, EVER, but yesterday we pretty much covered it all. At one point, I chuckled and said, “Well, I know where I get my stubbornness from, Grandma. YOU.” We were talking about her not letting a girl who’d stayed with them cook for her, even though she was there to do just that.
And I made her cry. Yes, I made my grandma cry.
She said I hurt her feelings and that nobody had never, EVER called her stubborn. Well, I apologized immediately because I didn’t want to hurt her feelings, but I also know that everyone has always called her stubborn. I guess it’s been behind her back, so she’s apparently never been faced with the truth.
When I think about all we did talk about, I’m struck by the fact that this is what made her cry. Out of all we talked about~ and I’ll tell you, we covered some extremely intense and painful territory for about 5 hours~ but me calling her stubborn is the only thing that made her cry.
You know me~ it has my head whirling. Four hours of sleep and lots of thinking later and this is what has jumped up out of it all and consumed my thoughts. Our human nature~ how do we hide our true nature from ourselves? Sometimes even to the extent that everyone who knows us can see it, BUT us.
Denial is a strong, dangerous character, especially if you’ve entertained it your whole life. I’m tempted to say it’s right up there with bitterness, but I guess denial is really like the antithesis of bitterness and probably a way more peaceful brain space. I guess I can’t deny someone denial for that reason.
The saga continues. It wasn’t resolved yesterday. Today another attempt will be made to get help for them. I did the best I could and certainly paved the way. Now, I’m wrapping my protective bear claws around my mom and dad and bearing my teeth at anyone who blinks at them crooked.
I am, after all, my grandmother’s granddaughter.