Waiting for Someday

On the first day after the last day of my job I opened a blank journal and wrote:

September 22, 2011

Today is the first day of retirement from the job. The first day of the rest of my life begins.

“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3

Thank you for this day, Lord. Thank you for a lifetime of blessings.

Teach me these great and unsearchable things I do not know.

I’m listening.

Instead, I went into hunker down mode, willing myself to endure and wait for SOMEDAY…. someday when I can relax and be me.  At my age I don’t think waiting for someday is an option.

While going from a paying job to the role of caregiver is not the route I imagined for retirement, I also never imagined how hard this would be.

I thought our presence here would make her feel safe.  I thought I would cook and clean and make the house cozy and welcoming.  I thought I would have time to write my Alaska book and do all manner of creative thing as the mood struck.

The reality is… I watch as she slips deeper into the fog of dementia.  She sees people who are not there and they hide her things at night.  I battle a fog of my own.

The reality is… much cleaning and repair have been done since Doug and I arrived, but the house is far from cozy and welcoming.  I long for my own home, a real home.  Is that a place or a state of mind?  I don’t know any longer.

And the reality is… I watch her hands, which used to sew beautifully, struggle to maneuver a bread knife over toast.  My words are gone.  Creativity, where are you?

She criticizes.  she instructs… as though I were ten years old.  I want to tell her she has no right to speak to me like that… I am a grandmother for heaven’s sake.  But I bite my lip and end up feeling like a ten-year old anyway for having such thoughts.

There is much speaking loudly so as to be heard in this role of caregiver.  By day’s end I’ve given my own self a headache from the sound of my voice.  I wonder if the sound of my voice gives other people headaches?  Note to self… do not ask my husband that question.

There are times compassion overwhelms me.  She has lost so much.  Then moments later I struggle to be patient and kind.  I feel selfish and weak and horribly flawed.

I am all those things – good and bad.  Human, you know.  I also suspect waiting for someday is not a good plan for anyone of any age.  Life is precious and far too short.

It’s also good to re-read things written before the struggle.  Good reminders…

“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3

I’m listening.

6 thoughts on “Waiting for Someday

  1. Oh Brooke (so good to see you back), a beautiful and painful post. Isn’t it true – so many times we think we’ll be home free, then the reality hits and we barely get through the days. The work you are doing now, the love you are showing now, is worth every moment. The Lord sees and knows. This morning I read, Ex. 19:4 , “How I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself.” Yes, we need to be reminded many, many times. I like how you brought the post full circle. Listening is a big part of writing – consider that your writing task for now. hang in there!

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    • I love that verse, thanks, Maureen. And thanks for the encouragement. Love what you said about listening being a big part of writing – – I hadn’t thought much about that but it is so true. Listening and learning and hanging in there – – will do 🙂

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  2. Galatians 6:9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

    Sending good thoughts and prayers for strength for you Brooke. If you need anything, let me know.

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  3. I’ve always liked Deut. 11:14 — “if you…love God, your God, and serve him with everything you have within you, he’ll take charge of sending the rain at the right time, both autumn and spring rains, so that you’ll be able to harvest your grain, your grapes, your olives. He’ll make sure there’s plenty of grass for your animals. You’ll have plenty to eat.”

    You’re not really “waiting for someday”, Brooke, but working your way faithfully towards it. There are seasons in our lives, and even the rainy times have a purpose, as trying as they sometimes are. In the next season you’ll have many precious memories to treasure of this difficult but special time.

    Praying for you.

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