Stress will do bad things to your body and soul. I’ve talked about stress in almost every post lately, but it’s just about the only element of its small size that fills the space around me.
A true friend, one recently bad night, gave me such a good truth; and one so fitting I might add:
“Your body will stay on earth to rot. It’s your soul that lives eternally. In this life, we give so much to our body’s. We feel hopeless and helpless and unconfident due to the way we appear, but we are looking in the mirror at our bodies through our SOUL’S eyes. Would you feel the way about your body as you do now, if you saw the girl in the mirror walk into the restaurant or down the street? Would you treat her the same as you treat yourself? Give your soul the credit. We are here to glorify our Father’s name, to remind those who get caught up in temptation why we are truly here-to look at His wonderful creation. Separate your body and soul. Your body sure is part of His creation that He is more than proud to share with you.”
– (my memory and interpretation) of Lori’s words❤️
My body aches. I’m in a flare. My throat is swollen. I don’t want to do anything or go anywhere. I feel depression deep inside of me, but I’m fighting it back with prayer. A fever comes and goes, my eyes burn, I’m tired, my head hurts so badly.. my mono won’t subside, and with each passing day, my joints feel more loose… I could go on. Couldn’t we all?
I have no right to complain. No matter how badly I feel, I will never feel as badly as my grandmother does now – not until my day comes too.
“Old age is a beautiful thing, Bailey. You appreciate God at such a different level. The relationship you develop with Christ is a relationship that could not be made at any other age.” – My DD (Larry)
My Mimi lies in her chair so pale from this life.
And I have the nerve to say I don’t feel well…?
She smiles as I walk in:
“Ooohhhh there’s my sunshine!!”
.. she leans her head back and closes her eyes as she tells me stories from our past… We reminisce together.
She tells her Visiting Angel (home health) that since I was just a tiny girl, I would come into the kitchen with them as they drank their morning coffee. Before the sun had shown its face and before then other grandchildren woke…
“I’ve always loved sunrises and sunsets”
It’s always been the number one thing that I’ve always known on her list, while they searched for a house to move back into town. Large windows to the East and the West.. so she can see the sunrises and sunsets. 🌅
She continues to tell her Visiting Angel,
“she’s always been my Ms. Sunshine.”
She points my necklace out to her, and she smiles as she tries to find the words… I finish the story for her, and she leans back to breathe as much as she can again. “We have matching necklaces. They both say the same thing, mine is in her writing and hers is in my writing.”
“She ordered them..” (Mimi chimed in).
She said the words in amazement. And she touched my heart just then because I knew that as special as this necklace was to me, it shared the same value to her.
What she really said, that flipped my heart over in my chest, that broke my ribs that surround it, that left my heart so vulnerable, it slowed..
“You know what? I wouldn’t change a thing.”
Tears rolled down my face, and before i could think of what to say, my answer rolled off of my tongue.. “I wouldn’t either..” – only to give her comfort. If she feels pleased, then I do too. I try to at least.
“So many have come together, in this situation, that haven’t spoken in years. Apologies have been shared and love now exchanged.
Her head fell back onto her chair to rest. Her eyes closed and a smile came to her lips.
I held her hand, rubbing her forearm with my other. And I listened:
“So many have found Jesus, because of this, so many have run to him. I wouldn’t change a thing.”
And at that moment, I found out how strong my Mimi truly is. As she sits in this chair, in home hospice, her husband in the kitchen – planning her pill schedule to be more fitting to her day, walker now with tennis balls covering the back two legs because she can no longer lift it to step forward, a heavier oxygen tube in her nose, and her skin and hair almost alike – weaker than ever, beginning to thin and sometimes unable to open her eyes….
she wouldn’t change a thing.
What she really said,
“My miracle child… God saved your life that day [my birthday], and He spared your mother of her’s… God has such meaning for your life, Bailey. Don’t go looking for it. You just sit back and let it come to you. Your life holds so much purpose, sweet sunshine. I have always been and will always be so proud of you.”
I’m in a flare. And I don’t feel good. And I could go on about how I woke up with a sore throat this morning and the weather….
But what I’m really saying is, if I could be half the woman that my grandmother is, I would be more than satisfied with my life.
I pray that her strength is genetic. She sits now in complete peace. She loves her family, and, oh do we ever love her!
She loves wildflowers and open air. She loves seeing you smile and looking into your eyes – deeper than your surface. She loves her family’s laughter, and making sure they’re ok. She loves hearing about how you are, no matter how she feels. She loves locus and birds’ songs, She loves sunrises and sunsets, and:
“next time you need me, you text: ‘Mimi I need to see you’ and I’ll know what you mean.
You are always welcome in these arms.”
She gives the best hugs. And I loved seeing her smile. It filled the space around me with an element larger than stress, an element of hope.
She has always had a way of making me feel the good in life.