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May is one of the most beautiful months around here - flowers in every color imaginable have begun to bloom. Butterflies are excitedly dancing through the yard as our resident bunny feasts on newly emerging plants.
Last weekend my husband and I had worked most of the day planting new additions to our flowerbeds. We noticed an apparent leak in our irrigation system. Ugh! Another issue to deal with we weren't counting on.
As we were assessing the damage, Mama Robin landed in the water soaked grass and victoriously collected a worm which she then delivered straight to the mouth of one of her babes in a nearby tree. Doug and I stood motionless, taking in the awesomeness of nature and God's provision - while feeling somewhat proud our leaking irrigation made the task so effortless for this feathered caregiver. The happy chirps of gratitude were music to our ears.
May is beautiful and full of life.
May also holds beautiful reminders of my mom, who was equally as full of life. On Mother's Day I silently celebrated the gifts this beautiful woman imparted to me. I quietly experienced the sorrow of all Alzheimer's disease stole from her this week, which marks seven years since the disease took her life. Tomorrow I will remember her grand celebrations of those she loved and wish she were here so I could celebrate Mom on her birthday. She would be 86.
In Stone Benches I share in detail what Memorial Day weekend held for Dad and I seven years ago when we navigated that most difficult journey. This holiday weekend ushered in a new season of life for us, one absent of Mom's presence. An existence we neither wanted nor knew how to manage. Dad will be enjoying his celebratory hamburger and summer spread this weekend, untainted by the loss this holiday held for us. In many ways I am grateful the absence of memories also protects him from the sorrows.
God turns our wailing into dancing and clothes us with joy.
However, I am keeper of the memories and hold them all - the joys as well as the sorrows. As I reflect on the beautiful memories of my mom, I am also charged with remembering the struggles this disease presented us. This is why I offer our experiences in an attempt to help others. Over the next few posts, I will share our summer experiences, as well as tips for surviving the challenges of this season with your loved one.
I encourage you to enjoy the beauty of each moment this holiday weekend. Reassess what is important. Accept the challenge to simplify and let go of expectations - this is a conscious decision. When we assess the source of these expectations we often find they are self-imposed. The most important ingredient in any gathering is the sweet companionship of others. We miss out on this when we are overwhelmed and stressed.
We must learn to look for beauty amidst the trials of life.Often, even though the spigot is leaky, it provides sweet opportunity to experience God's provision. Find that stone bench - or picnic table - this weekend and soak in your loved one's presence! May the making of sweet and precious memories await you!
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