Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Dress Her Need

As I was praying for my Kathy this morning, I kind of tripped over a word. I said, "Dress her great need" instead of "Address." I was about to correct it when I realized how fitting it was. There's what I've come to think of as a low grade fever in this season of her life. Caring for her husband after his stroke with the greatest and most tender compassion, she has been his sole caregiver and is constantly vigilant about his condition and anything that might aggravate it. His care, his comfort, his well-being is what I hear from her in every email. She is his champion, and whether he's aware of it or not, Heaven sees and knows.

Her sweet husband was recently hospitalized and in a coma. Long story short, she waited for days through test after test to determine the cause, she was given the duties of a nurse because of shorthandedness, and then made to be the bad guy for telling family that their long visits were exhausting him and protracting the treatments. They recommended a nursing home, but she insisted on taking him back home. She told me, "Maybe someone will do me the same kindness someday."

Tasks from the most mundane (dressing him) to the more arduous (crating around the wheelchair and navigating through foreign airports) are hers to do alone. None of his family have risen to the occasion. Somehow they just do not get it. I hear all this not through clenched teeth and raised fist, but with a sigh. I actually think she pities them for their small hearts and short minds. I have known this woman for 14 years, and she honestly lives a life founded on the compassion that is Christ and the actions that come from a sincere and yielded heart.

I know she would poo-poo all this and tell me I'm exaggerating and making her out to be superwoman, but she is my hero. I am touched to the core to call her my friend. In the midst of everything she's going through, she gifts me with her frequent updates, makes me laugh, and now she's sending me something in the shape of a heart that I look forward to getting in the mail soon.* God bless her!


* Back when her husband had a stroke, I would pray for her daily, and then again every time I saw something in the shape of a heart. They would come in all varieties--a cloud, a rock, a garden stone, stationery, chocolate, an ice chip, spilled milk (not even kidding), etc. I saved one rock that I especially liked and took a picture of this ice chip that fell out of my glass. Cool way for Him to keep her close in my heart and mind. I am grateful.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Last Stop On the Honeymoon

Brett & Lydia didn't have a chance to eat anything at their own wedding reception, so they drove right to a grocery store and downed some sushi that she held so that he could drive. While I find that sad and somehow cruel, they obviously survived and zipped off to Amarillo for the first stop on their honeymoon. They stayed at the historical Monte Vista Hotel in Flagstaff and savored a beautiful dinner. Hiking and camping for the first time, Lydia said she really liked it, but nobody enjoys doing that stuff in the rain, even if it is Yosemite.

After winding their way north from California to the Seattle area to visit Nana and introduce Lydia to new relations, they made it here for a Washington reception. The day started out interesting weatherwise, and we never know what to expect when we get these mixed signals.

The cupcake "shmear

Lydia getting the wedding video ready for guests

My incredible Ya-Yas, without whose emotional and physical support I could never have pulled this thing off, much less keep up with guests and spontaneous needs. Their perfume is the fragrance of Christ, and I am one piercingly blessed woman. (Cheryl, I still owe you for all the pasta salad and punch!)

My oldest son and my new daughter

I can't herd all the thoughts of gratitude, wonder, and anticipation I have. The scenes and conversations will play themselves out many times before they settle, and I will marinate in the joy and newness of this new stage of life with a full heart.


Friday, June 03, 2011

Rehearsal Day

Got into Wichita Falls last night about 8:00, but didn't get to Lydia's until about 9. She made a lovely stir fry, and there were egg rolls, with cheesecake and sweet cuppin' cakes for dessert. The idea was to have our families meet in a relatively stress-free environment. It was great.

When I saw Kelly, Lydia's mom, come around the corner, the first thing I was struck by was the sweetness of her face. What a kind and gentle countenance. It never faltered once either. We helped cut out programs and then left for the hotel.

Gonna be a hot day. Looking forward to the fun!!