I’m feeling blessed today. I’ve heard from nearly all the kids and the others were in my thoughts. I spoke with the dads in my life and to those who I didn’t, wishing you all a blessed week ahead.
In spite of the love and memories that were shared today, I’d like to share a challenge that is building for our family. While grilling outside tonight, I had a chance to have a call with my brother-in-law who lives in California and is married to my older sister. After the ‘guy talk’ finished, it led to an update on the condition of her health.
Unfortunately, a little over a year ago, we learned Brenda, who is now 55, was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia. It’s not the type of dementia most people get with age. It’s more of a shrinking of the front parts of the brain that control cognitive thinking.
Over the past year, we have seen a progressive decrease in her ability to carry a conversation with us; even the basic types where we talk about what’s happening in the news or about school work for my nephew & nieces.
We’re planning a trip back to California in September to spend more time with her. Hopefully, we'll even get a chance to visit the beach much like the one in the photo today located just off the coast where they live.
Fortunately, my youngest sister lives nearby and has a been able to help with the kids. She was the one who first brought the condition to our attention. Having a grandfather and prior stepfather both pass from dementia, the family has seen the devastating results on those with it and those who care for them.
On a personal level, my sister, Brenda, is the one person in my life who I share so many things with from our upbringing, our college (she attended ORU as well), our faith, to having moved to California with lots of shared memories, and family, there. We may have fought a great deal when we were young, but she later became one of my best friends in this world who has stuck by me through thick and thin.
To say my heart is burdened tonight would be an understatement. I had committed to calling her every week, but have slacked a bit with it lately, partly due to my own ability to deal with the emotion of it all.
The Mrs. has been wonderful with her love, support, and prayers for my sister. I truly married a jewel in God’s crown.
I do believe God is perfectly capable of healing any disease and have seen it with my own eyes in others, including my own family. I know He is able to heal my sister too. In the meantime, I’m going to continue praying for her and will be getting out to California to spend time with her.
So, tonight, although wonderful, also brought with it a heavy sense of gradual loss. I’d like to ask all who feel they can, to please say a prayer tonight for Brenda. All things are possible for those who believe. Beyond that, I’ll pray that you have a blessed, and fruitful, week ahead.
Love always my friends,