Even to your old age and gray hairs
I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
I will sustain you and I will rescue you.
Brian's mom celebrated a birthday yesterday. We took her some delicious home made strawberry cupcakes which she said she couldn't eat. Lighting the little candle, we sang "Happy Birthday, dear Martha, Happy Birthday to you." After expressing her kind thankfulness, she quietly informed us, "I wouldn't complain a bit if I died tonight. I've lived long enough!"
I think about what a full and healthy life she enjoyed for so many years. While attending Iowa State University, she met Paul, a civil engineering student and they were married after graduation a few years later. She was sidelined for a bit when at 33 she contracted polio and spent time paralyzed from the waist down. Her strong will made her fight back so that eventually she was able to walk again. Her third child, Barbara, was born after this illness. Martha went on to raise her three children and live a long and meaningful life along side her husband for 72 years. They lived in their own home until a few years ago when Brian moved them to Marion so we could better take care of them. Paul died last November and since then, her spirited disposition has dimmed and her strong personality has quieted.
Martha has had a rough couple of weeks when a bout with diverticulitis hit her unexpectedly one morning and landed her in the hospital for 3 days. While there she often talked about wishing she could be done with life. Her pain was difficult and her will to live seemed to fade with each passing day. But as the antibiotic worked its magic her attitude improved greatly. She was feeling much better on the day we brought her back to her assisted living facility.
She is now trying to get strong again but is finding it demanding and fatiguing.
We care for Brian's mom. She means much to us and we will do everything we can to make her life comfortable and worth living. She has grandchildren who visit when they can and call her when they can't and a great granddaughter who delights her. She wants to find out if the next baby, due May 1st, is a boy or a girl. We hope that she can enjoy her last days (or months or possibly years) even though her body is not strong; her mind, not quite as sharp. With the loss of Paul, her desire is strong to "go and be with him."
We don't get to make decisions about the day of death so Brian and I plan to make sure she is comfortable, go and sit with her often and make good decisions concerning her care, until that moment arrives. We are trusting that even to her old age, God will sustain and carry her...until they meet face to face.