Skip to main content

Precious Memories


Chris in his tux ready for a band event

Today is my son's 39th birthday. I can't help but think this is not the way it was supposed to be. He should have finished college (he lacked one semester), gotten married, traveled the world, and had kids by now. Life doesn't always play out on the roads our dreams make. I find memories both haunting and precious.

I have wonderful memories of watching my kids in the marching band. I recall teaching Chris to drive, do laundry, and cook mac & cheese, like other parents. We spent time playing catch and served on worship teams together. He played the drums, and I was either on the keyboard or guitar. Countless hours were spent making music. We read together and did crazy stuff together. Once he was an adult, we'd sit around and discuss lots of philosophical matters while downing a couple of pots between us. One time, we were sitting on the porch, just finishing up a deep conversation and the last drop of coffee. We sat in silence for a minute, then I asked him if he was ready to go or if we needed to make another pot of coffee. He thought for a second. Then, he said, more coffee, of course. We talked for hours that day. I could probably write a book of precious memories I've made with my son and my daughter too.

Those same memories can be haunted by the "supposed to be's." Some days, I have to stay away from social media because I see his friends having successful careers, marrying, divorcing, and having kids. Most days, I'm good, but there are days I just can't handle it emotionally.

I wonder if Joseph's memories haunted him as he sat in the jail cell all those years for something he didn't even do. Maybe he thought of memories he had with his brothers before they betrayed him and sold him as a slave. Surely he remembered sitting around the fire and talking with his dad. What about Daniel? He had memories of freedom he would never taste again in his lifetime. Managing memories emotionally is tough stuff.

Many caregivers are caring for aging parents or loved ones who suffer from some type of dementia or other memory loss. We watch them slip further away from us with each passing day. Memories again are precious, but they can also make the pain of the moment more difficult to handle. How do we deal with it all? I think for me, I'll package it all up and lay it at His feet. He sees the intense pain in our hearts. He sees the tears that fall - and even the ones that don't. God gets us.

Today, I will focus on things that cannot change. I'll set my mind on His peace, mercy, grace, and love that carry us through caregiving days. I'll choose to remember the ways God has helped me get through the tough times before and during caregiving. Psalm 77:10 says I will remember the years of the right hand of the Most High. I will remember the works of the Lord, surely I will remember Your wonders of old. I will also meditate on Your work, and talk of Your deeds. (NKJV) Asaph gives us a bit of direction for when we can only see pain. Just look at how God has worked on our behalf in the past. So, today, I will focus on how God has helped me on this caregiving journey as I think of warm and wonderful memories of my son on his day. Will you join me?


Popular posts from this blog

Ups and Downs

  Maybe it's just "that time of year" for me, but I've struggled a lot the last few weeks. I still affectionately  call it the caregiver's fog. Lol. Okay, maybe it's not-so-affectionately. I know I can share my true feelings with you guys because you get it. You understand the day-to-day grind of caregiving. The military has a saying about there being no easy day. I think we live in that reality. It's just not easy caring for another whole person, is it? Caregiving presents many difficulties. We can find ourselves alone, so very alone on this journey. It doesn't just go away. We don't just work through it. It seems to go on and on. There are lots of ups and downs - and that can be about every 90 seconds some days. Right? (smile!) As I've been working through this emotional maze the last few days, I turned my thoughts to Daniel. Let's take a realistic look at his circumstances because as we read his story in the Bible, we tend to glamorize i

Seasons Are Temporary

  This morning, I found myself reading in Isaiah 28. I ended up there because I was looking for something in particular, and even though I didn't find what I was looking for, I found what I needed. God's so cool like that, isn't He? My eyes first fell on verse 29, which says in the NKJ: This also comes from the Lord of hosts, Who is wonderful in counsel and excellent in guidance. I rolled that over in my mind and heart a few times and spent a few minutes thinking about how I'd seen His counsel in action in my own life. We've all had those times when we weren't sure what to do or where to go, and suddenly, an idea drops into our thoughts. There are many ways He provides direction for us. He may direct our steps through a passage of scripture, a trusted spiritual leader such as a pastor, a YouTube teacher, and maybe even a lowly blog writer. Lol. No matter how He chooses to deliver His counsel, it comes - but we must listen. After I had rolled these thoughts and t

The Practical Side of Caregiving

 This week, I've been reading the book of Acts. I am enjoying the journey of the early church. Can you imagine what it would be like if your church saw 5000 people saved in a day? Mass chaos would ensue as leadership tried to figure out how to serve that many people! It'd be great and difficult at the same time - kind of like caregiving. Lol. But yesterday, I got stuck in Acts 9 thinking about a practical caregiving issue. In verse 32, we read that Peter was traveling around and encouraging all the new believers. He came to the town of Lydda. Verse 33 says in the NLT, There he (Peter) met a man named Aeneas, who had been paralyzed and bedridden for eight years. Now, the next verses talk about how Peter proclaimed healing, and the man just got up! That's so amazing. But my brain got stuck on some of the practical parts. Aeneas was paralyzed and bedridden. My mind compared the situation to my son, of course, even though he's not "paralyzed." I started wondering