Often, I am a child again, Daddy, because in your mind I am. In long ago memories, we work—we play—we live in the past. This is so often my time with you. In your world, there are problems to be solved, and I am now your hands and feet to solve them. You look at me with those incredible blue eyes, and wait for my answer to your problem. And as always, I say, I have taken care of that, Daddy. You have always been a solver of mysteries, and now that is my job—my joy. You trust that I take care of the chickens you are raising, and speeding tickets you get when driving without a license. You trust me without hesitation.
You have entered this age with grace. A very private person, now your life is open and exposed. You need help to move from your wheelchair to your recliner. You need help to find your food on your plate. You need help for every activity of daily living. But through it all, you still smile. You still have a peace that guards your heart, and still guards your mind from fear that so many with your illness experience. Even if for a season, I treasure what is offered now.
“Timothy has brought good news about your faith and love,” Paul wrote. “He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we also long to see you” (1 Thessalonians 3:8b). I am so thankful, Daddy, for your memories of good times in the past. You so easily could be consumed with those that once brought pain, but for now you are not. I know you still long to see me—just as I long to see you and hold your hand—hug you and try to do for you what brings tears to my eyes, but joy to your heart.
Lord God, I never want to fail my father, but I must remember that the love you give will always be enough for his needs. No matter what happens in his world that makes no sense, I can never meet the needs of his mind, because those needs change. What is true for him in one moment is no longer true in the next. I learn to live your peace in the grace you daily extend for this hard path. Just as with Mama’s journey, there is a beauty that reaches beyond the pain of loss, and recharges my heart. I hold on to my good memories with a joy that fires faith for the road ahead.
Copyright 2017 Lynn Lacher