Grief & Doubt as Doorway to Awakening Your Gift
Ronda's Reflections on The Gift within Grief (Through Meeting Aging Parents in Decline)
Returning from a month long wintertime stay in Upstate NY with my - "all of a sudden now" - elderly parents, I continue to reflect on the "absurdities" and "indignities" and "way challenging demands" of turning old and no longer having the same mental clarity and function, physical abilities, and independent ease of life-making.
What a passage, is growing old... with it's turning inward and dropping down through so many losses of an earlier life: loss of hearing; dimming eyesight; forgetting names, directions, memories...
And I wonder: When (and if) I reach my parents near 90 years stage in life, will I have the capacity and the graciousness to meet it with gentleness, humor, and a wisdom in letting go? I sure to God hope and pray I do.
Through experiencing the daily living and decline of my parents this past winter, I have been forced to meet my own mortality and the limits of self control in ways I don't feel at all prepared to meet! (Are we ever wholly prepared for life's challenges?)
This holiday season and it's extended stay, Matt and I experienced - up close and personal - what life is like when the mind tumbles toward dementia; when getting through the day becomes a chore of meeting up against one's own limits of faculty.
I've felt the stunning sting of my father becoming bitter and beliferent and down right unkind to those trying to help him as unobtrusively as possible. I've seen my mother become deeply saddened - struggling to keep a spirit of joy - as her best friend since childhood and her husband of some 66 years, sleeps most all day in his chair.
...And I've watched myself as I meet these two - now as their provider/helper more than their daughter. They are not the mother and father I kn