One week ago, we were told my husband’s mother would be discharged from her rehab. center. She had only nine days left @ that facility.
Her home wasn’t an option for a 93 yr. old woman who fell frequently, had to climb 14 steps to get to the bathroom, was alone for most of the day, and who just suffered a stroke—which left her with acute cognition problems.
Where should she go? We had to redefine what home would be for her.
Moms of children with serious mental illness (MI) have to redefine what a home is. It’s no longer about walls adorned with family photos of happy times, or an immaculate house.
MI has a way of stripping away the superficial façade so we can clearly see what matters most. We strive to build a home that’s secure, predictable, and private. We long for independence and former routines. We yearn to see the familiar face in the expression of our child with MI.
A nursing home would be the new home for my mother-in-law. We set out to find one that would provide security and a level of privacy. As we toured the facilities, the admission directors spoke of services. I studied the eyes of the residents. MI trained me well to detect sadness, pain, abandonment, and helplessness. Thankfully, the Lord led us to the perfect place. One where my keen eye caught caring touches of the staff and peaceful looks on the faces of the elderly.
Now comes the time to transfer my mother-in-law. Our next challenge: to ease her transition. Surely, we don’t want her to feel evicted, uprooted, or homeless. We’ll help her adjust by decorating her room according to her wishes.
Is moving ever pleasant? What will help her feel like she’s home? Doing the same things moms do for their MI children. Surround her with love and support, in the context of a safe environment. But how? With God’s help.
Many of us will face moving. What a daunting ordeal! The packing. Moving day. Leaving old friends and familiar scenes.
How we’d love to click our heels, like Dorothy in the Land of Oz, and be transported to a new home! There will be a day when we will be launched from our own fabrication of perfection. In the twinkling of an eye, we will meet Jesus face to face.
Oh, how I long to join Him in the holy city He promised to prepare for believers! To live in the home built by the Master Carpenter where there will be no more tears or sorrow.
“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:2 NKJV)
“God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” (Revelation 21:4 NKJV)