Friday, July 29, 2011

The Gift

I've been handed a gift.

My dear, adorable 90-year-old Granny has recently had some health issues. As a result, she was put on an antibiotic that we were warned had a slight chance of affecting her blood sugar, causing it to plunge. In a diabetic, this is not good news.

Yesterday morning I was at an appointment. My kids were with my mom, who *just happened* to NOT be volunteering like she usually is. When I got out of my appointment, I saw that I had a text message from my youngest sister to CALL HER. She was at my moms.

I knew it must be serious. She had been at work the last I knew. I called her. She told me that my Granny very suddenly deteriorated to the point where she had to lay down, wouldn't eat, was feverish, and barely coherent. Mom, not able to reach me or my older sister, called my youngest sister, who dropped everything and ran over. She told me she was very close to calling an ambulance - that's how unresponsive my Granny was.

I told her I would be home in a few minutes. I knew I had to check her blood sugar. My youngest sister had never done it, and neither had my mom. My Granny, my older sister and I were the only ones who did. Obviously, that will change.

I ran in the door, and immediately understood the concern. My Granny looked very frail lying on the couch. She was so "out of it" that when I poked her finger she didn't even know or care. I was surprised then to discover that her blood sugar was a little high.

I then found out (although I had been told this already but didn't retain it) that my mom very wisely was able to get my Granny to drink some Pepsi just before she *crashed*. And I honestly believe this drink of Pepsi is what saved my Granny's life.

It took about an hour after drinking the Pepsi, (about ten minutes after I got there) but my Granny came to and, after initially being very weak, was able to get up and walk about with the assistance of Lana and I. We took her immediately to the doctor, where my suspicions were confirmed. Her blood sugar dropped dangerously low. She was taken off the antibiotic that interfered with her blood sugar and switched to a different one that didn't. (Likely should've been what was done from the beginning......but then hindsight is always perfect.....).

The implications of what could have been are very difficult to think about. *If* my mom wasn't home......*if* my mom didn't give her a quick sugar fix.....*if* my mom couldn't have reached my sister......

We quickly made arrangements to have someone monitoring my Granny at all times while being treated for this illness. That meant staying through the night and during the day when my mom was not home (plus giving my mom some peace and reassurance, which she very much needed AND deserved). As a result, my kids and I had a sleepover at Granny's last night.

I made a pledge to my Granny a little while ago that I would do my best to serve her to the best of my capacity. Even though there have been times it has made my life very hectic, I honestly feel like I've been given a privilege. I wonder if I would have felt that way 20....or even 10 years ago?

Last night I helped my Granny. I became her servant. When she was finally ready for bed, I told her I was going to tuck her in. She smiled and said, "okay". She sat on the edge of her bed, not moving. I repeated my request. She smiled at me, realizing she really would have to indulge me. Then she laid down. I tucked her in nice and cozy.

Then I knelt beside her bed.

And I prayed. I thanked God for this wonderful woman. I asked Him to wrap Himself around her that night. I asked Him if He would touch her and heal her. I told Him I had the best Granny.

And I heard my precious Granny saying, "Jesus. Jesus."

I then leaned over and kissed her cheek. And said, "Night, night."

And I left her room knowing I had received a precious gift. Life had come full circle and the Granny that blessed me and at times tucked me in bed when I was little.....well, I was able to return the blessing.

As much as we enjoy reaping what we sow....assuming we have sown for the *good*, I realized how precious it was to be the instrument of blessing to my Granny.

And I will preserve this precious memory. For all time.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

The List

My daughter has entered a new phase. She is freaked out over all "flying" bugs. This was something she mostly conquered a couple of years ago, but for some reason, this year it has hit her worse than ever. Consequently, it makes doing our regular paper route very stressful, frustrating, tricky.......and tries my patience to the max.

However, this post is not about Hannah's bug phobia.

Today, I had to cut my Granny's grass. My mom was not home. My daughter is freaked out over bugs. Therefore, in order to actually complete my task in a timely manner, I chose to let the kids stay inside while I cut the grass. Otherwise, I would have been dealing with my daughter and not getting my work done......and it was too hot to mess around.

So, my children stayed inside with their Great Granny. (I felt the need to explain why they would be INside while I was OUTside, thus the story of her phobia.....of which my son is only slightly better....). I gave them "the rules".

1) Seth was not to be a pest to his Great Granny. At all. He likes to bug the snot out of her if he can get away with it, by touching her cheek or her hair, "stealing" her chair, and various things.

2) Hannah was to do something quiet.

3) They were both to OBEY any request of their Great Granny's.

4) I spelled out to them their consequences........Seth was to lose his lego-making privileges...(it was his current passion) INDEFINITELY. Hannah was.......well, to be honest I didn't name her consequence because I didn't think she would be the issue. But I did let her know there would be a consequence if she disobeyed her Great Granny.

I then went about my thirty minute grass cutting task.

When I came in they *conveniently* disappeared downstairs. I asked my Granny if they obeyed her. My Granny likes to stick up for her poor, little great grandbabies if she fears for, so the fact that she very willingly stated that they "didn't listen to me at all" is a very strong statement to their disobedience. Apparently they shrieked and screamed and pushed and wrestled (all things that are okay at times and in certain places if it's in fun.....but they know it's not to be done at Great Granny's house because it bothers her).....Great Granny hollered and yelled for them to which they remained intentionally oblivious to her pleas.

I FOUND them downstairs. I told Seth his legos were currently history. I told Hannah that she was not allowed to read any of her NEW library books or ANY of her own books at all until further notice.

I suspected this could be a very effective method of discipline based on the reaction I got from my daughter. I was, after all, *TAKING HER VERY LIFE AWAY!!!* sniff, sniff.

I went upstairs to visit with my Granny. A while later, Seth came up and handed me The List. From his sister. A list she made because of the dire consequence of her *inability to read*.

1) I cannot read the Bible.

2) I cannot play the piano. (Because of course that involves *reading* music).

3) I cannot type on the computer. (Because she was practicing typing using paragraphs of...BOOKS.)

4) I cannot read to my brother.

and my personal favourite.......

5) I cannot cook or bake........(Because of course she would have to read instructions of some kind.)

I laughed. They were pretty good actually. And I knew I had hit on a potentially awesome consequence.

And I assured her she could still read the Bible. And all of her future cooking instructions could come verbally, of course.

Now I expect a full gourmet meal from this.