Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Sometimes we have to lose it all...

A little over two years ago my husband and I moved to this area because my grandmother (the woman that raised me) was dying of cancer. She was living with my aunt that had decided that she was not going to allow my grandma to die in a nursing home or hospital but instead at home where she could at least be surrounded by people that loved her. My aunt had a job outside the home at the time and needed someone to be there to take care of my grandma while she was at work so we moved into my grandma's room in the basement. After we got here my grandma only lived another few weeks. I watched her waste away and become weaker and weaker when she had always been the strongest person I had ever known and it was hard. I got to be there with her and tell her how important she had always been to me and I got to tell her and SHOW her how very much I loved her by helping to take care of her in her final days. She taught me even more about life and love in that last few weeks than I could have ever learned in a lifetime. In that last few weeks she taught me about true forgiveness and she told me that by finding out she was going to die, she had learned that everything that she had always thought was so important really wasn't. That she had always been so focused on the things that she should have payed less attention to and ignored everything that was truly important. I didn't ask her what that meant because I felt like if she had wanted me to know she would have continued to tell me but she didn't. So the closest I could come would be to look back as far as I could at her life and try to figure out it for myself.

She left me in the early morning on July 26, 2011. Before she died I watched her look at people that weren't there and she called out to them by names that I didn't know. She would argue with them and sometimes she would weep softly. She kept saying she wasn't quite ready yet. I was holding her hand as she took her last breath and I had given her kisses and told her how much I loved her and what a wonderful mommy she had been to me. I told her I would see her again someday although my faith wasn't real strong at that particular point.

It wasn't too long after that that my husband got a job working for a security company. It was there that he met and became good friends with two men that introduced him to God. I remember he came home from work one day asking me all kinds of different questions. I had the answers to some but I told him he needed to read the Bible. My grandma had taught me quite a bit about God and this was the first time that I ever had to actually stop and think back about what all she had taught me. She left several Bibles and Jay had his pick of which one to read. It was at this point that we invited God into our life. We continued to live with my aunt for eight months after my grandma passed. We were holding out for our tax check to get a place of our own since we were paying my aunt 500.00 every other week to live with her and that was a huge chunk of my husband's check. I was having horrible back problems that required me to be on constant pain meds and I tried working during that time but it didn't work out. We had only a month left to wait for our taxes when my aunt's son decided it was time for us to leave because he wanted the entire basement to himself. So we moved into a one bedroom motel room and that's where we've been until now. Taxes came last year but we needed a car (it ended up breaking down) we had to pay back money we had borrowed to help us stay here until taxes came so we ended up stuck in what seemed like a never ending rut. Over the last year we have had times when we had very little food and never any transportation but we learned to find the true happiness in life and we have always had God. He answered so many prayers that we started to feel like we didn't deserve anymore and yet He's still answering them. He has taken such wonderful care of us during our time of greatest need. I have not had very little back pain and I have been off meds for 6 months now. The little bit of pain that I do get now is mild and I am able to control it with aspirin and I was diagnosed with two herniated disks in my lower back, sciatica and restless leg syndrome. Through all of the hard times we have had, mine and my husband's relationship has grown ever stronger.

We have grown closer to God and ask Him for His continuing guidance. We know that without Him we would not be getting a real house with 3 bedrooms and a full finished basement PLUS a car. Our life had to be torn down in order to be built back in such a way that we could actually appreciate it. This is why I firmly believe that things like money and material objects are only distractions to keep us from truly living the way we should. Family is most important and helping others. When we get too focused on worldly things it's hard to lose them. We can get stuck in the mindset that our life is over when in fact it is merely a new beginning. A chance to start over with a clean slate and build something even better. By better I mean a life full of LOVE. Only love will lead to TRUE happiness and that can NEVER be lost. It is by the grace of God that we are TRULY blessed.