18August 2016

Going With The Flow

August 18th, 2016|

In my first 30 years, I was a “frequent flow-er.” I’d always look for the flow and go with it. I was relaxed about everything and just let things happen (even college and early career). Then real life hit – big job, marriage, mortgage, kids, etc.

For my middle 30 years I began planning and pushing my plans through – come hell or high water. Somehow, I believed if I didn’t push, we wouldn’t get anywhere (notice the “we”). I thought my spouse, kids, co-workers all needed me to come through for THEM. (I think that is called being narcissistic and […]

2August 2016

Having Enough

August 2nd, 2016|

Summer brings to mind all those great family vacations. My mom didn’t like to fly so we always traveled by car – reptile farms and mermaid shows, waterfalls and caverns, old railroads and battlegrounds, Stuckey’s Pecan Logs and Callabash shrimp.

And all along the way were Gift Shops – marvelous, magical places full of coon skin caps, sling shots, plastic snakes and the ever-popular ship in a bottle. We were allowed just one souvenir per trip, so we weighed our options carefully and were often heart sick as we pulled out of the parking lot leaving behind that special “something” to […]

21April 2016

Prejudice

April 21st, 2016|

Our family is thrilled to be a part of this amazing project – www.inthelandofcanaan.com.  This clip from the soon-to-be-released documentary is eye-opening, heart-opening and spot on!

How can we, as caregivers, help others see the people we care for as fully human, belonging, essential?

21March 2016

You always have a choice.

March 21st, 2016|

I just learned of a woman who took the life of her 24-year old daughter with special needs and then took her own life. Friends say she was very depressed and overwhelmed. She had not been receiving much help.  How can caring for a family member with exceptional needs drive a person to such desperate measures? People are in shock. I am not. I get it.

When one becomes selfless, caring so intensely for another, there is an insidious darkness that creeps around looking for a place to take up residency in your soul. Loneliness, fear, guilt, resentment and inadequacy constantly […]

31January 2016

What if….

January 31st, 2016|

This morning I was feeling especially “put upon,” full of self-pity, exhausted from a night of no sleep, tired of the daily grind that faced me again today. I exploded on everyone in my path, which sent them scurrying off mumbling, “What’s up with her?” which left me feeling alone, misunderstood and unloved. Ever been in that downward cycle?

Mercifully, I know that in times like these, I just need to get alone with God. But I wasn’t prepared for what He so clearly spoke to my heart.

“What if the one who needs a healing miracle is not Mary Addison (our […]

30November 2015

Becoming People of Peace

November 30th, 2015|

The post read, “We’re looking for people of peace to join us in this project.”

People of peace? What does that mean? Would I qualify? Am I a person of peace? Why a person of peace? What difference could that make as long as I’m qualified? But that was the only qualification. I was captivated and determined to know what a person of peace was and why that was so important.

I read that post over 30 years ago when I was young and starting out in the world, looking for my first “real” job. I quickly lost interest in “people of […]

13October 2015

Loving Hands

October 13th, 2015|

As caregivers, we can easily become overwhelmed because we believe it is our job to fix, heal, protect, comfort and sustain the person for whom we care. We may find ourselves in the role of primary caregiver, but the truth is, only God has the ability to fix, heal, protect, comfort and sustain the person for whom we care.

With all that we do, it is easy to feel like the full responsibility has been put on us, that we are in control. We bathe, feed, and transport – to doctor’s appointments, therapies, school, etc. We develop schedules to keep it […]

30September 2015

Back from the Brink

September 30th, 2015|

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12 

Easier said than done. We’ve been through a very dark time. Mary Addison has had seizures almost daily for 23 years, but recently, she would come out of seizures unable to walk, talk, even swallow. Just when she was making a little progress, another wave of seizures would hit, rendering her incapacitated again. We actually thought she’d had a stroke. Terrifying to say the least.

During this scary time, our regular caregiver had to leave us due to government red tape. So our normally active world shrunk down to […]

22September 2015

Isolation

September 22nd, 2015|

Then he said to them, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” Matthew 26:38 (NIV)

Jesus’ words here resonate with me. There have been so many times when I just wanted to scream “I feel so alone! I can’t do this by myself.” I have a wonderful husband and loving friends, yet I can still feel so alone.

The key word here is “feel.”  Mary Addison’s seizures seem to have the power to consume me to the point of losing everything else – my identity, my social life, my health, etc.  […]

12August 2015

How To Love

August 12th, 2015|

“We love because He first loved us.”  1 John 4:19

Love can get so complicated. So much fear of giving love and losing a bit of ourselves if we get hurt. So much manipulation – I will love you so that you will love me. So much disappointment – You don’t love me enough.

Our daughter, Mary Addison, is mentally and physically challenged and she has shown me how to love.

One of Mary A’s favorite past times is to go to very busy places and say “Hi!” to people – total strangers. Her “Hi!” or “Hello!” is very exuberant and is often […]