Thursday, November 10, 2011

10th November

On and off all through the day I’ve been thinking about Jane. That’s pretty normal I suppose, but I have been trying to keep myself busy, and therefore distracted, in order to limit my ‘downtime’, as it were. Nonetheless I’ve been wondering, again, about what Jane went through in her final few weeks of total dependency, mostly upon me, for all her personal care. She was basically unable to do much of anything for herself. And because my love for her was so complete I gave her my all, trying to make her as comfortable as possible. But really, it was over some years that our lives ground to a halt as we focussed exclusively upon our faith journey, persevering in prayer, whilst working through almost every medical intervention offered. And some that weren’t; as when the NHS ran out of options we worked with a private nutritionally based treatment… funded on a charitable basis. And I was always the one in our family that everyone turned to when something broke. If I couldn’t mend it or find a work around I’d usually see about a replacement. I saw myself as a ‘Mr Fixit’. That’s what dads do don’t they? So now I feel a failure at not being to ‘mend’ Jane when she got ill. I know I shouldn’t see myself that way, but that’s how I feel today. I had over 5 years to sort the problem and I couldn’t do it. Did I pray enough? Did I ask the ‘right people’ to pray? Was there something I could have done that I didn’t? There’s no way of answering any of those questions, I have to trust that the Lord led us through every step of the journey and his will was done. But that’s not always easy. And I do believe I did make Jane as comfortable and as ‘happy’ as humanly possible, as did our family who are incredible examples of loving kindness.

It’s obvious that it’s me that needs mending at the moment. The sad thing is that Jane with her training in Art Therapy would have been ideally situated to help me, but she can’t now. It seems that I’m down to self-help. Guilt is a very common step in the bereavement journey. And in my mind I know that I gave Jane everything I could, nothing left over. But in my heart I just miss her so very much and that leaves me feeling so sad that sometimes I can’t think straight, which is why I feel guilty of failure when I shouldn’t. In actual fact I should really see myself as a great success. Despite my own personal health challenges, despite the most impossible challenge of palliative care in the home, love won through! The peace of God fills my life as much today as it did whilst I cared for Jane. His presence and favour is with me in a very special way each and every day… he is everything to me. And he has his goodness set before me tomorrow, for sure.

In my meanderings into ‘blog world’, just this afternoon, I came across a U-Tube link which says it all. I don’t claim to be an American Country fan, but the message fits my thoughts today perfectly… though it gave me a rather soggy pizza after crying through it again this evening!

Martina McBride -  ‘I'm Gonna Love You Through It’

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ‘Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.’ (NLT)

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