Tag Archives: love

Some one I love is living with Alzheimer’s

I got to spend time with my mamala for her birthday. She is wonderful and she is perfect. And she is worried and fearful that something may actually be wrong, or maybe people just think something is wrong and she is perfectly fine. Either way, she is bothered.

I wasn’t able to make her laugh as much this visit. Making her laugh has been my focus for the past few years, because it is such good medicine. We laughed this visit, but less. If I’m wry or sarcastic, it’s totally lost on her now. I have to be very gentle with teasing or she might think I’m being mean.

And then there was the coffee. She and my dad make half-caf, so when I visit, I always have to bring my own high-powered coffee. For the past couple of years, she had taken to grabbing my coffee, cup after cup every morning, and “doctoring it up” the way she likes: lots of artificial sweetener and a generous swish of milk to lighten it up.  I’d sometimes have to make coffee 4 times just to get to enjoy a cup of straight black before she got to it and thought it was hers. It drove me crazy.

But this visit, she never reached for my cup. She didn’t even try. She waited for me to bring hers to her, and then we both had our coffee, the way we each liked it.

You may not think that is a big deal, but I see her changing, backing away, noticing less each time. She is getting smaller, not just physically, but in the way she occupies the atmosphere. I am mourning the parts of her I will never see again. But wait…for a flash, for a split second, there it is again…but then gone.

It really is the long goodbye.

mom and dog 6.5.16 small

She asked me to teach her to use the TV control. We worked and worked on it. She used to be the techie in the family, she was the one who would hook up the TV to the VCR to the DVD player and whatever else or call Dave for computer help and she’d figure it out. It’s gone now. After 15 minutes, she still could not retain that the on-off button was top, right.

I used to be able to do this. What in the world is wrong with me? Why can’t I do this anymore? It’s like I am going backwards or something,” she kept saying to me.

It’s the same question she asked about the washer and dryer and her CD player and the telephone. She doesn’t even ask about the gas stove. The microwave is starting to become mysterious, now. Sometimes you put your coffee in and it comes out hot and other times, it doesn’t. Why is that, she is wondering?

I told her gently, very gently. Yes. These medicines are because you were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Yes, your memory problems are part of Alzheimer’s. Do you know very much about that?

It perturbed her. “You mean that is what they are saying I have? That is why they keep giving me these pills?!” as if a diagnosis is an accusation of some sort. She doesn’t like it. But I know she won’t recall it anyway. Tomorrow, she’ll wonder why she “keeps going backwards,” remembering just enough to know she is losing something…

But I told her that she is doing fine, just fine. And then I promised her I would remember for her, so she shouldn’t worry. And she cried. She just fell into my arms and wept.

And I assured her that love isn’t a memory that can be forgotten, that it will always stay up to date, so we would just keep on loving each other. Every little thing will be alright, mamala….
And I just held her for a while.

mom and bogey 6.16 small

—————–xoxoxo——————

You can learn more about Alzheimer’s at www.alz.org. There are articles about the signs and symptoms and great resources for caretakers. They remind us that everyone with a brain is at risk for this. And I am passionate about raising awareness because this woman, my sweet mom, is the last person on earth who would deserve to be fighting this battle, but Alzheimer’s doesn’t care. So I hope we can find a cure so my own children and theirs are not left watching the pieces of the people they love fall away, and are not left holding the bag as this insidious disease ravages our nation and the world.

Alzheimer’s is the only disease among the top 10 causes of death in America that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed. – alz.org/facts

#endalz #thelonggoodbye #alzheimers #igopurplefor my mamala…

Song for a Sunday // The Perfect Valentine

You don’t give Your love in pieces, You don’t hide Yourself to tease us…

My youngest daughter, Stormie, introduced me to a song a few months ago that is a powerful tribute to Love, true Love, the God-kind of Love; the Real Thing.

Amanda Cook and Steffany Gretzinger wrote this song, “Pieces.”

{{Chords and lyrics here}}

Love keeps its promises, it keeps its word

It honors what’s sacred, cause its vows are good

Your love’s not broken, it’s not insecure

Your love’s not selfish, Your love is pure

Happy Valentine’s Day, to all who need love. Here ya go!

jesus lover of my soul

1 John 3:1  See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.

He is my Valentine

Dave.

he's my valentine30-umpteen years ago he stood at an altar and made an awful lot of promises to me about faithfulness and love in sickness and in health, through good times and bad. There is no way either of us could ever actually have comprehended the bends and twists and bumps in life’s roads. But those made-in-innocence-and-passion proclamations are turning out, one day at a time.

It isn’t so much that he promised me then, on a day of breathless anticipation, but that he keeps making promises, writing our future with the words he says to me, the things he does for me. And I know I can believe him because of all the years and all the love and all the ways he has quietly, but oh-so-faithfully held my heart, covered my brokenness, cheered me on to my best successes and been so very true in love.

There were obstacles. Things could have gone differently. But…He chose me. He married me. He keeps choosing me and the embers glow with white hot love, stronger as the years increase. He is my lover, my husband, my truest and most trusted friend. He is my heart and he is my home.

He is my Valentine.

My Dave, I am yours and you are mine.

“Place me like a seal over your heart,
    like a seal on your arm.
For love is as strong as death,
    its jealousy as enduring as the grave.
Love flashes like fire,
    the brightest kind of flame.” Song of Solomon 8.6 NLT

May you love and be loved so, my friends and family. <3

Celebrating September Love

Happy 11th Anniversary, Dave & Tara!

dp and tp

Our firstborn daughter married the man of her dreams 11 years and two fantastic sons ago.  They are still acting like newlyweds and spreading the love around! In fact, in two days, they’ll be putting on a concert, Decades, featuring love songs from the 1940s – right on up through the present.  Deets can be found at dtp.eventbrite.com. And there will be food.* 

A sample…

Happy Anniversary, Dave and Tara. Thank-you for the 2 outrageously cute grand-boys, the love you are living and all the joy yet to be! So lucky God gave you to us! How can we ever thank Him enough?

hunter and kai sept 14

Hunter and Malakai after the candy store (taken by Aunt Stormie)

Happy 8th Anniversary, Rocky & Jovan!

anniversary

Almost exactly one year ago, you lost so much in the floods that ravaged Colorado and you have been hard at work, tearing out, throwing away, cleaning up and re-building. And the number 8 in the Bible signifies new life, the old is passed away, new beginnings {all things are made new} and wow – that is SO right on for you two! God is just doing new-wonderful things in your life!

anni j and gs

The 3 little women with their beautiful mama

So glad Jovan started crushing on you when she was only 14, Rocky. So glad you fell for the woman she became. Thank-you for the three extraodinarily stunning little grand-girlies you have shared with us. So much life and love yet to experience and you’re doing it well!

anniversary 2

##############

September is such a lovely month, isn’t it? Lovely and love-filled!

* The Comida Truck will be at the Decades Concert. So good food, too. Hope I see you there! :)

Holy shambles!

Christmas lights are twinkling through bedroom windows as nightlights and I pray over cherub faces and tuck each child in with the requisite two stuffed animals and/or squishy toys.  We whisper our good-nights, the boys in one room, and 4 little girls next door.

grandkids at christmas

I give the regular if-you-wake-up-before-everyone-else-please-just-read-a-book-and-don’t-wake-your-cousins speech, though I know with 100% certainty that it will be ignored at 5:54 am sharp tomorrow.  Still, I go through it and ask one more time: Did you go pottie?  Brush your teeth?  I add more blankets so they won’t get cold.  They kick them off, “I’m hot, Nonna.”

Everyone is tucked.  I can’t help but pray over them again and again for God’s anointing on their little lives and for peace and joy and for good restful sleep and a smile in their hearts and for God to heal little sniffles and keep them safe from evil, who lurks near our babies – this, we know.  I pray and I pray and they let me.  They make their requests known and soon, if I don’t say amen, we will be up all night praying over every detail in their universes…

More hugs, more kisses, more one-last-drinks…whew.  We made it.

I walk into the hallway and through my house.  O.my.goodness.  There are globs of toothpaste in every sink, toothbrushes teetering on counter edges.  There are overcoats and outer-wear and underwear strewn about in bathrooms, entry, living room, family room, and yes, even in the kitchen.  Every couch pillow and cushion has been used otherwise and our floor is covered with blankets and baggies of cheese balls and water bottles with names written on them.  Are there any toys left in the playroom, I wonder?

12 29 12 with their reindeer prints

Is that a marshmallow gun target on our front door?  Why, yes, it is.  Why do you ask?

Evidence of a family feast-night and a disco dance and watching the Turtle Man- Christmas episode and a couple of Gilligan’s Island re-runs (to my great dismay) and my house is in utter, complete and total jumbled, snarly, tangled, topsy-turvy, chaos and clutter, with a side order of full-blown dishevelment.  Yep.  It is a mess.

And me?  I love it.  I am neck-deep in grandbebes and it is grand!


Still basking in the glow of the holy days of the holidays. Merriment continues…

30.687 years and counting

Married to my Valentine.  Lucky, lucky, lucky girl.

This is my dedication going out to you tonight – with a house full of grandbebes (the fruit of our lives and love) and “Gilligan’s Island” too loud on the TV and Star Wars guys strewn all over…dedicated to the one I love:

 

 

There’s no, no looking back for us

We got love sure ‘nough, that’s enough

You’re all I need to get by…

All the joys under the sun wrapped up into one

You’re all, you’re all I need to get by.

 

Dammed Love.*

A wine bottle corked.

The river dammed.

The door closed.

The singer silenced.

A balloon tied in place.

The song unsung.

The letter unread.

The adventurer shut in.

Memories boxed up.

A mess contained.

The words deleted.

The music faded.

Feelings repressed.

Appetite curbed.

Senses restrained.

Passion censured.

On the sidelines, unchosen.

No secrets shared.

No hands are held.

Like a writer with no pen…

So does love, unanswered, unreceived crush the soul.

But love anyway.  Love conquers all.

I wrote this sometime ago and am no poet, so I let it sit.  Thought maybe I’d try to polish it up and make it flow better, or use better imagery, even though these things make sense to me.  But today, when I re-read it and got to the end, I remembered a song I once heard Martina McBride sing on American Idol, the only time I’ve ever actually heard it.  And it seems like it belongs here.  All is not lost.  All is not futile.  And especially for “C” today, when so many things feel so heavy and your heart feels like it cannot hold another hurt, hang in there, sweet friend.  Love anyway.

*Dear Mama (who taught me to always sing anyway)-I did not cuss.  This is like a dam in a river. xxoo

Love like this

Love never fails. 

If I have the words of men and angels and can argue all my cases and can even do God’s bidding for Him, but I don’t have love (to give), I end up just being a bunch of loud, imposing and worthless communications.  And if I have the gift of prophecy and can reveal to everyone what God’s next move is, let everybody know the secrets of the ages, and yet do not love people {{what?!? a prophet without love?  is that possible?? // pure sarcasm}}; and while we’re at it – what if I am the latest, greatest spiritual- hoo-ha, laying hands on people and moving mountains, or totally different – what if I am dancing all over injustice and rescuing the exploited and raising money for the poor and saving everything in the world and on the earth that needs saving, but I can’t manage to love…can’t just put it into action {{love.is.a.verb. so sang DC Talk}} towards the person in the room with me, then what?  What is the point if I can’t show it, be it, live in it, allow God’s own love through me…to you, then?

I don’t get love, after all this time, still.

1 Corinthians 13.  Image taken by Stormie.  From her view while lying on the patio swing.  On a sweet Sunday afternoon.

God, help me learn to love like this, no hidden agendas, no manipulating, just free of self-focus and selfishness.  Teach me to be hope-full, trustful, protecting at all times.  Give me opportunity to become patient (but be merciful, too, here, Lord, please) and by the end, can You help me to be, so I will be remembered for being, kind?  I so appreciate kindness, I would like to be kind, too.  I really would.  So I wanna learn to L O V E like this, like 1 Corinthians 13 talks about.  It will have to be Your love.  Yours.  Through me.  Let it be.

Lust {not love} Hurts

From Half-Broke Horses, a book she is reading, Erin shared this quote:

“By loving you, I have destoyed you” he said. 

 “…you have a mighty high opinion of yourself,”  I told him….You don’t love me and you haven’t destroyed me… You dont have what it takes to do that.”

What we were taught:

We spent an entire 2 days in junior English at Hammond High School dissecting the words to the Nazareth song, Love Hurts, its’ imagery, its’ angst.  I heard it every single day on the school bus, to and from home.  It sunk into my heart as fact – if you love some one, it will eventually hurt you – irrepairably.  Having been around the block, I know now this is not true..  This is not love. 

But if you replace the word “love” with the word “lust,” the song holds a lot of insight.  Because while lust comes to take, to consume, to use, {true} LOVE comes to give, to nurture, to sacrifice.  It isn’t that there isn’t risk and pain in maintaining true love, but love, real love, covers so much.  It is the greatest thing of all that will remain (1 Cor 13).  Lust is a passing-fancy while love is an unbroken covenant.  Lust hurts, but love heals.

LOVE HURTS by Nazareth

love hurts, love scars,

love wounds, and marks,

any heart, not tough,

or strong, enough

to take a lot of pain,

take a lot of pain

love is like a cloud

holds a lot of rain

love hurts, ooh ooh love hurts

I’m young, I know,

but even so

I know a thing, or two

I learned, from you

I really learned a lot,

really learned a lot

love is like a flame

it burns you when it’s hot

love hurts, ooh ooh love hurts

some fools think of happiness

blissfulness, togetherness

some fools fool themselves I guess

they’re not foolin’ me

I know it isn’t true,

I know it isn’t true

love is just a lie,

made to make you blue

love hurts, ooh,ooh love hurts

ooh,ooh love hurts

Truth:

1 Corinthians 13 (New Living Translation)

1 If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. 3 If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.

4 LOVE IS patient and kind. LOVE IS not jealous or boastful or proud 5 or rude. [LOVE] does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 [LOVE] does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 LOVE never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

8 Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But LOVE WILL LAST forever! 9 Now our knowledge is partial and incomplete, and even the gift of prophecy reveals only part of the whole picture! 10 But when full understanding comes, these partial things will become useless.

11 When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. 12 Now we see things imperfectly as in a cloudy mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.

13 Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and LOVE—and the greatest of these is LOVE.

Bill-the-Romantic

“If music be the food of love, play on.”

~William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night

Did I tell you about my early birthday present?  It is this turntable-thing-machine that will digiitize my old vinyls and cassette tapes!  Oh yes!  That will be my project for the next 17 years or so…