I am so blessed to live CLOSE to Quadville!
It takes me only 22 minutes from the time I walk out my door to when I walk up to theirs!
I went over to spend the night last night and arrived in time for the Bed Time Story!
Amber is reading Anne of Green Gables and they were at chapter 8!
I dearly LOVE that book, that movie and ALL of L.M. Montgomery's writings!!!
After the kids were in bed and sound asleep - or nearly - Amber and I settled ourselves in for a little quality Mother/Daughter time together!!!
Mothers and daughters.
And age old combination with so very many variations.
I was both an extremely YOUNG mother and also a - what was considered in the medical field at the time - an AGED mother. Amber is a QUAD MOM - and an absolutely exceptional one, at that!!!
As mothers, we all set out to do our very best.
I believe God wants us to be REAL without being hurtful. Life is not always pretty and when you see sweet pictures of happy smiling faces - and these are genuine! - it is natural to assume the relationship you see now is reflected in the glow of long happy years.
That is not always the case.
Deanie, Nita, Lonnie and I lived our childhood in a dark ugly world without the protection or comfort of loving parents. Instead we had an evil step father and a mother caught up in the tangled webs of a life she no doubt never meant to be in. We grew up in fear, anxiety and insecurities. We raised ourselves, watching over each other as best we could.
Even as a child, I had a strong faith in God and I claimed Psalm 68:5 where God promises to be a father to the fatherless. All four of us can testify that Luke 4:10 is true!
"God will put his angels in charge of you to watch over you carefully."
Instead of bitterness, God gave us grace.
Romans 8:28 is my Life Verse and promises us that ALL things work together for GOOD for those who love God! In the darkness of our childhood, we learned lessons which helped us over the course of the next 50+ years. We learned to cope and survive. We learned to adapt and adjust.
We learned to be content in whatever condition we found ourselves just as Philippians 4:11 tells us.
The most important lesson we learned was to accept whatever happened as the will of God and to forgive. The reason I am saying all this is to be honest and truthful about our relationship with our mother.
Deanie recently spoke to Mother's doctor, telling him that we are looking for a place for mother to live - other than with her children. When he learned that we all have been in difficult relationships with Mother - he was shocked!!! We do not have a story book experience of a loving, devoted, selfless, sacrificial mother relationship. That doesn't mean that we don't love our mother or that she doesn't love us. I'm just saying it is what it is and has been what it has been,
Mother had a stroke in September of 2005. If she had died then, my siblings and I would not have the relationship we have with each other today. God had a plan THEN and he has a plan NOW! God ALWAYS, always, ALWAYS has a PLAN! We four have grown extremely close and are very protective of one another. These last 10 years have been the very best ones in our lives - I really do believe for ALL of us - Mother included!
After Mother's stroke, they told us she would never be able to dress herself, feed herself or bathe herself. She certainly could never live alone again. The doctors didn't know our mother!
She is a strong person and she wanted to LIVE and DO and BE! And so she did! She went on to live by herself for another two years after the stroke. The only thing she did not recover was her speech.
I think God even had a plan about that!
She lived with Nita for seven years before Nita was spent emotionally.
She has now lived with Deanie for the last 18 months. Deanie's health has deteriorated during this time while Mother's health is better than it's ever been!!!
My home or Lonnie's home are not viable options.
It is odd how things work out. Deanie and Nita suffered the most as children and they GIVEN the most in taking care of Mother. However, they can't continue as caregivers and something must be done. We have to find a place for Mother.
Deanie had heard about Courtyards at RiverPark, a Blue Harbor Senior Living Community.
We had a 10:00 appointment today to meet with the Outreach Director.
I left Dallas early this morning in order to make it to Fort Worth in time for the meeting.
I did NOT get past Irving before I ran into severe weather that forced me to to get off the highway and wait for it to ease up and allow me to get home. I stayed home for 15-20 minutes and then headed west again - bound and determined to DO THIS THING, as the quads say!!!
I arrived in time to meet this amazing man, Mario Hawkins!!!!
He is an angel in disguise, I do believe!!!
He has such a gift - setting us at ease and helping us see the options we have and now he is working on our behalf to see if he can make it possible for Mother to live here.
He showed us the ONE apartment available and this wonderful corner set of windows that Mother will dearly LOVE!!!
The 'apartment' is more like an efficiency with one spacious room, two lovely windows, a double closet, bathroom and,,,,,,,
small kitchenette! JUST what she needs!!!!
Her door opens onto this community living room for the cluster of residents whose doors open to it.
The place is beautifully decorated and CLEAN!!!
Several public areas where Mother can visit and make friends.
The dining room is just steps away from her door and the staff was so pleasant and friendly!!!
I love them already!!!
Mario introduced us to Josh Fogg, the Executive Director.
We were so impressed with everything we saw today!!!
Now we are praying the numbers will crunch and this will work out!
The ONE vacancy is available at the end of the month!
Deanie and I took ourselves out to eat and to talk about it all.
Deanie is beyond EXHAUSTED and it is now MY turn to do some things to help her!
The main thing I did was to share our plan FOR Mother WITH Mother!!!
She was thrilled!!! She was aware that Deanie has been in poor health and I explained that she could not take care of her any more. Neither can Nita. Nor I. Nor Lonnie.
Now she can have her OWN place again!!!
Her response??? "Thank GOD!!!!"
I knew living with others is seldom what a person wishes for - especially when one has been as social and independent as Mother was. I explained as much as I could all at once while I had the opportunity. Finances. Expectations. Sacrifices. Attitude.
My dear sweet sister is all used up and I am hoping and praying her health will improve in a BIG way and SOON!!!!
I left Mother smiling although I told her I would be BACK on Friday to take her home with ME for a week!!! Her cuss words come out crystal clear and I was prepared to hear her favorite one - but she didn't say it! She smiled! My home is not nearly as adaptable for her - there's no way she can use a walker without knocking things down right and left. On the other hand, there are plenty of things for her to hold on to as she makes her way from one room to another. No vast open spaces HERE!!!
My work here was done. For today.
I took myself to a place that always puts a smile on my face and cheer in my heart!
I didn't buy a lot. Just a nice bottle of Riesling and one of Pinot Grigio. A bag of Cranberry Orange Tea Scones - that's what it says on the package and I think those are such lovely words!! Oyster Crackers to make Dilly Bits with the quads tomorrow. An assortment of good cheeses. (There was a man from France that works there mingling with the shoppers and offering samplings of some delicious cheeses!!! I took some just to hear him talk some more!!! LOVE that accent!!) Two bunches of fresh daffodils and eucalyptus. LOTS of frozen Chinese food!!!
This IS my happy place!!!
Then I decided to check out Hobby Lobby - another favorite!
Kailey comes in on Wednesdays and gets the Bible in the little Bible cover that her mother had back when SHE was Kailey's age and Kailey carries it around all day and 'reads' it to her siblings.
When I saw these small New Testaments - in pastel colors - I KNEW this was MY Easter treat for the quads! THEN I spied a set of FOUR small colored canvas bags to use as Bible carriers! Win! WIN!!!
THIS will be our craft for Quad Wednesday! They can stencil their initial on their bag and put their new Bible in it!!
Since this IS Tuesday, I bought four paint brushes for when I finally get to return to my NORMAL Tuesdays of Goodwill, Movie and ART!!!!
I meant to take the older grands out for yogurt this afternoon but was emotionally worn out after this day and wanted to get home before the evening thunderstorms arrived. I had ENOUGH of driving in those horrible things this morning! So far it is calm and peaceful as I write. I will reschedule soon because I was really looking forward to seeing them again!!
The daffodils are looking pretty!
The eucalyptus smell heavenly!!!
I end this day's post on a happy positive note!!
And I say AMEN!!!! to that!!!!!