Friday, April 19, 2013

Till Death Do Us Part

The words spoken at any marriage ceremony... "Until death do us part". It seems to me these words are spoken so lightly, meaninglessly, flippantly, these days.
This morning I had the privilege to go to our Grandparents house and do some work. Our Grandpa has Alzheimer's and our Grandma has become his full time nurse. As a nurse on Stroke/Geriatric ward, we often see these types of patients and I have had the experience of caring for many of them myself. I am 29, she is 86. I groan in my heart when I am assigned these patients, she has this patient 24/7 and all she does is smile. I have the utmost respect for my Grandmother-in-law, I have never seen anyone care for someone as she  does her husband. She has a decent sized house here but Grandpa stays in the front part of the house, it would be the living room. She has a perfect set-up. His bed against one wall, hers against the other, a table and three chairs on the other side and a couch on the last side. Lots of open windows and a sunroom attached. I asked if I could help with Grandpa, to feed him, move him, whatever she needed. She refused, the only thing I have been able to help with is moving him to the bed a few times. She has it all figured out. This tiny, short, small old lady, wearing a scarf tied around her head and a big housecoat apron, with her floating kidneys and off balanced walk; has it all figured out. She bathes him, dressed him, feeds him, takes him to the bathroom and puts him in bed... by herself! And he is no help. He can still take a few small steps, but he has completely lost his mind. He no longer utters sensible words but spouts off jibberish and laughs like a mad man. But she serves him and loves him as he is her husband 'till death does them part.
I love this old lady, she is kind and stubborn. I went to clean her windows and Arnie to do some yard work. When Arnie told her to just relax she said she couldn't, instead she decides the best job for her is to hold my ladder as I clean the windows!!! She talks to me in Hungarian as if I understand, somehow the few words I have said have led her to believe I understand everything. I just nod and try to figure out her sentences by the few words I comprehend in them. When I done, she told Arnie he had such a talented wife for how well I cleaned!!! Oh my, only in Hungary is this a compliment :)
I feel as though I have done nothing in the grand scheme of actually helping her, but isn't that how service works? You think you will go and make a big difference, but instead, often times, the difference is made on you. I couldn't do what she does at 29, yet I hope I would try.

1 comment:

  1. This brought tears to my eyes.
    What an incredible woman! That truly is service!

    I've been learning about service alot lately and you have it bang on... Service may not feel like your doing alot for the other person but its all about what they need. I'm loving hear what's happening on your journey and look forward to your posts!!

    Praying for you!