Monday, September 5, 2011

My Mom

A couple weeks ago, my dad had to suddenly go into the hospital because he had blood clots in both lungs. My mom is completely lost without dad. He was in the hospital for about 5 days. School was back in session and so I couldn't take time off in the day to be with mom. We were very fortunate that Ashley had not gone to college yet. Ashley had mom all day and I took over after work. I stayed the night at mom's house for 5 nights. With mom's Alzheimer's, she gets very confused and frustrated whenever her routine is upset. Each night we would come home from the hospital. Mom would ask where dad was, I'd tell her he is in the hospital. I would remind her of his condition and that she had spent the day with him. About an hour later, we would go through the same routine. Mom and dad have a spare room at their house but if I slept in it, mom would sleep on the couch. If I slept on the couch, mom would sleep in her own bed. I always sleep on the couch. On Sunday morning this week, I was sitting in the living room reading the newspaper. Mom went to the kitchen and prepared herself a bowl of cold cereal. Took it to the table and sat down to eat. I think she forgot I was even there. She said a blessing on the food. First she thanked Heavenly Father for the food she was about to eat. She asked Him to bless it for her nourishment. She then started to cry and she pleaded Heavenly Father to please spare the life of her husband. She asked if He needed someone, please take her. She said that dad could live without her but she could not live without dad. She is sobbing this whole time. It was so sweet and tender. I took her to church with me that day. On the way, she said who was worried because she didn't know anyone from my ward. I told her not to worry, I had 2 people in my ward that knew her. I said Billie Purcell from our old 5th Ward and Wilma Aldous from our old 7th Ward will be there. She said she was ok but I could tell she was still apprehensive. We walk in the back of the chapel and immediately Billie bolts from the back row and embraces mom and reminds her who she is. About 5 seconds later, Wilma sees the commotion and goes to mom and hugs her. This small gesture made mom feel so welcome. It made mom's church experience so special. Later that night, as I'm trying to get mom to go to bed, I hear her in her room saying her prayers. Again I hear her pleading with Heavenly Father to spare dad's life and return him to good health. Mom doesn't read her scriptures like she used to. I liken her to the 5 prepared virgins who have trimmed their lamps and have prepared themselves with a reserve of oil. Mom has enough oil in her lamp to get her through these rough years. Even though she can't remember who people are, she still knows that Heavenly Father knows her and loves her and answers her prayers. I have no doubt that she knows this when she needs to. How grateful I am for a mother who set the example. I am grateful for the love she shows me and my children. I pray that my children can see through this different person that mom is now and remember the sweet, loving grandma that they grew up knowing.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Spending Time With My Family

One of my favorite things to do in the whole wide world is spending time with my family. I have the greatest brothers and sisters. I love just hanging out and listening to them and watching them interact with their children. We were all raised in the same household and we couldn't be more different and more alike at the same time.
I also love to see how the next generation is coming up . They are a very impressive bunch. I see great things coming from this huge group of grand kids. I feel humbled just by listening to them and hearing their goals. They will have a positive impact in the future.
The hardest part of spending time together is saying good-bye. There never seems to be a good way to say it. We saw some really beautiful scenery and had some laughs and made great t-shirts and pretty soon it has to come to an end. Thank you to everyone that could come. We missed the ones who couldn't make it. I love the memories. Thank you for making my life better and showing me that you care about me and my family. I love you all.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

A New Chapter for Ashley

Ashley graduated from high school. Wow, I can hardly believe it. She will be going to BYU-I this fall. She has the Fall/Spring schedule. Thank you to everyone who has been involved in her life. She has had so many people influence her and help show her the way. There is no way a parent can do this alone. She has very special brothers that have helped raise her. Each of them have made a special contribution to the person she is today. I know Ashley loves the time she spends with her brothers and wishes she had more time with them. Ashley also loves the times she spends with Aunts Uncles and Cousins. She loves spending time with all of you. Family reunions are some of her favorite memories. Ashley especially loves spending times with her grandparents. She goes to their house and loves to listen to them remember the good old days. Mom and Dad usually 'get into it' because they each remember things a little differently than each other. They will argue over who remembers the best. Sometimes they are both wrong. I know Ashley is in for bigger things in life. I pray that I have taught her what she needs to know to be a well adjusted adult, we'll see. You probably need to be a well adjusted adult in order to show someone else how to do it. We might be behind the 8 Ball here. I love you Sis. It's been great hanging out with you.