I'm going to a baby shower on Saturday. Not my baby shower... but for my neighbors daughter in law, who is due a couple of weeks after me.
In my effort to find a box for the presents I got her... I realized that my smartest move was to empty out a box of WEDDING CARDS that have been stashed in the spare room since... Ohhhh.. June of 2009. Am I weird that I am keeping the cards from my bridal shower and wedding? I don't really have any purpose for them, but I just can't bring myself to throw them away.
Have any of you done anything interesting with your old wedding cards?
(Secretly, I was hoping that a gift card or $100 bill would slide out of one as I looked through them... hehe... no such luck!)
Anyway... the box was the perfect size... and I have now relocated the cards... but as I was going through them (yes, I looked at each of them one by one)... I found the card from my bridal shower that was signed by my grandma.
Some of you may recall that in previous posts, I have mentioned that her mind is being overtaken by alzheimers. (Even though my computer is screaming at me that I've misspelled it... I'm not even capitalizing it because I don't want to give it that much credit).
Seeing that card brought on a terrible rage in my heart.
Back then (which was March of 2009)... my grandma could barely write her own name. She signed the card (almost illegibly): "Love you dearly, Grand Ma Joy." Today... my grandma CAN'T write her own name. I doubt she could even SPELL it (Joy is just her nickname... her real name is kind of funky). She can't even remember the correct way to hold a pen.
My dad and aunts go in to "the home" pretty much every night to make sure she eats because she'll just sit and stare at her plate, not knowing that she needs to pick up her fork. They help her get ready for bed and say prayers with her before tucking her in. They even stay until she falls asleep.
She doesn't remember where the bathroom is, even though she has a private one in her room... and when you show her where it is, she doesn't remember what to do when she has to go. Trust me, it's not my first choice to have to help her... but we do the things we need to do out of love.
As I looked at that card with her signature on it... barely recognizable from all of the years of birthday cards and Christmas cards she'd sent to me... I wanted to scream!! I HATE alzheimers! I hate what it's doing to my grandma's mind! I hate that my dad has to show her how to eat! I hate that she randomly talks about things that make no sense, when you know that she so desperately wants to remember what she was trying to say in the first place. I hate that no matter how many times you can tell her something, she will never, ever remember again.... and you have to tell her each and every time.
Most days, I deal with it OK. If I'm with her, I do what I can to help her finish her sentences... to eat... to use the bathroom... to walk to the car or wherever it is she needs to go. But some days, I get so angry about it. It is heartbreaking to watch someone you love's eyes stare blankly at you.
I'm dreading the day when she doesn't remember who I am. But I think, more so, I'm dreading the day that she doesn't remember who my dad is... because that would break HIS heart and I couldn't bare to see him hurt any more than he already does about it.
My prayer has been that she would be with us long enough to greet my little one when he/she comes into this world. As selfish as that sounds, it would just mean a lot to me. But if she holds out that long... I pray that she wouldn't have to hold out much longer. I would rather her be in the arms of Jesus. No more suffering. No more pain. Only complete and utter JOY.
Cory had to go through it with his grandpa... and I am thankful that I have his understanding and support through my frustration. Ultimately, though, my only comfort is knowing that those of us who stand on the promise of Jesus will be fully restored in all of His glory!
My grandma deserves that and I know in my heart that one day she'll experience it!
(But in the mean time... I'll still hate alzheimers. It truly is a horrible, horrible disease.)