Tuesday, September 25, 2012

When Life Lands Us in Unusual Places

Moth on a parking lot in MD
I just returned from a trip to the beach to visit a high school friend. She (and her mother)  has been caring for her father full time since his stroke several years ago.

Her father can't speak very well and his face is somewhat distorted. He can't stand, walk, toilet or feed himself. He goes from the wheelchair to the bed. But what is amazing is the life he leads in between.

My friend ventures out all of the time with both elderly parents in tow. They recently went to the airshow on the boardwalk. My friend's father pointed to the planes and with a smile, he grunted the number of craft he saw flying in the sky. He used to be in the National Guard as a young man.

As we walked through doorways, he tipped his hat to strangers who opened the door for the wheelchair.

My friend's father grinned while watching a young child coo for her mother. And he spelled out the fact that he was ready to watch "F O O T B A L L" inside.

When we drove by the water on the way home, he shook his head in remembrance of the flounder fishing excursion. And he smiled when I thanked him for the boat rides as a teen.

It is hard to see my friend struggle to daily care for her incapacitated father. It is hard for me to see his wife have to feed him.

 But what is even more difficult to comprehend is the incredible well of love and hope that keeps on flowing from this family.

Life's circumstances landed them in a precarious place, one that is incredibly hard at times. One that is extremely unusual and yet they keep on giving, living and growing as a beautiful family.

Blessed Soul, NJ 12'

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