my brother and i took my kids to Epcot and Disney Studios yesterday. he has a friend who works there and he was able to get us in..it was a total lavish gift. my kids we thrilled.that morning, i told my sister that i felt guilty going to a such a happy place when dad is confined to a bed.she told me that she understood and that i should enjoy my children. i'd expect nothing less from her. as we drove to Disney, amidst the palm trees, mouse ears and signs for all things Disney...i told my brother the same thing..that i felt guilty. he shared a bit of his experience with his dad as his journey ended (we have different fathers) and then told me that life does move forward, and to enjoy the day with my kids.
it started out rainy..it ended beautifully.
we rode rides, watched movies, saw fairies, ate in France, rode the Star Wars ride, met mater and lightening..and to top it off, River got knocked down by a person dressed as Twiddle Dee.it was a really fun day. they loved it. they had a day with their Uncle they wont soon forget..
and at the end of the day, after pushing a stroller around and hiking back and forth between two parks and running to "catch the next boat"..i was thirsty. so thirsty. at first i told my brother i wanted a beer, it just sounded good. but i realized what i really needed was water..so i got a bottle and we all drank..and drank.we filled it several times and drank until we felt better. i felt refreshed and my guilt came back.
my dad is on a respirator. water and food no longer pass his lips.he gets the nutrients he needs through a tube in his stomach. his face is chapped. his lips are cracked. HE is thirsty. my thirst does not compare to his. he will never have the relief of water in his mouth again. i am crying as i write this.my body needed water at the end of my beautiful day and i was able to be refreshed. he is dry and cracked and miserable and no relief can be offered to him...except on a weird q-tip type stick, wet only with glycerin. THAT is his relief. that is only a drop in a desert of thirst.
the thing is, there isn't really an end in sight for my father's condition. one way or the other. recovery or death...neither are coming soon. so his thirst, physically, emotionally, and spiritually..will continue. i will go home to my house in Connecticut, with my chickens and rabbits and spring coming..and his thirst will continue.and i think, how do i move forward and walk the fine line of life and death? it is not expected of me to daily roll in ashes and wear burlap and mourn for his life, as it is technically not yet gone...IF i did do that, MY life would be gone, and the lives of my children and husband. and we are still very much alive. but i have guilt. guilt when i enjoy something too much. even here in florida, we all visit at least every other day (he is about an hour and 1/2 away from where we are) and i have been trying to do fun things with my kids and my siblings and mom, on the off days...just to bring balance. i dont know how to do this.
i am making my own way in this. this is all new to me. i do know this: that Jesus is offering me water/life every day and it is mine for the taking.(john4:13)
it is up to me, whether to hold out a thimble or a cup for him to fill.