The following song speaks of the beauty in suffering and the redemptive power in embracing and accepting our trials and painful life circumstances. It speaks of a marriage relationship, but for me, it speaks of my relationship with my mom.
Many times throughout this journey I have spent my time trying to out maneuver and escape my mom’s and my own suffering. I have made excuses of why I can’t visit her that week, or attend to a phone call needing to be made. I have justified why my many reasons are valid and good. I say I need to protect my mental health. At times, frequent visits can causes deep depressions, so limiting visits to once every week or two can help. But, the problem with excuses is, the more I make them, the easier they are to except. And consequently, the more I seem to make them. Two weeks can easily become three or four.
The realily is that after those visits, I am mostly left feeling grateful. I am grateful for how God intervened 7 years ago, and helped us transition mom to a nursing home, which ultimately got her sober and clean. Yes, it’s true, that alcohol and pills partly caused her early decline into dementia and kidney disease. But, if mom had not entered into the care center at that time, I have no doubts that she would’ve died very soon.
I am so much closer to truly accepting and embracing mom for who she is, was, and will become. As the song says, we were never meant to be complete (this side of heaven anyway), but we can be broken together. And that is OK, and yes, even good. We can bring our true, loving selves, and offer one another what we have to give. Our pride is stripped down, when continually faced with confusion and vulnerability. We have become more open to give and receive love and gratitude.
I have so much more of my true mom now, then I did when she was abusing chemicals. She isn’t obsessed with getting her next fix. Instead, she is present in the moment, or as much as she can be. She isn’t always sure of where she is, but she is spirited, joyful and loving. And very expressive. My children have the gift of sharing love with their grandma throughout their formative and early teen years. They have gained a greater sense of compassion and sensitivity to those with illness and vulnerabilities.
Recently, I’ve taken her to the dermatologist, who diagnosed her with multiple spots of skin cancer (not deadly melanoma), some of which will probably need to be dug out, because otherwise they won’t ever fully heal. She has bravely dealt with the pain of all those biopsies taken, and now she will need to endure more. I pray for the courage and strength to help her in her brokenness, as I try my best to keep my brokenness together.
And I pray for the grace to be grateful to God for allowing us to be Broken, together.
What do you think about when you look at me? I know we’re not the fairytale you dreamed we’d be. You wore the veil, you walked the aisle, you took my hand. And we dove into a mystery.
How I wish we could go back to simpler times, Before all our scars and all our secrets were in the light.
Now on this hallowed ground, we’ve drawn the battle lines. Will we make it through the night?
It’s going to take much more than promises this time. Only God can change our minds.
Maybe you and I were never meant to be complete.
Could we just be broken together? If you can bring your shattered dreams and I’ll bring mine.
Could healing still be spoken and save us?
The only way we’ll last forever is broken together
How it must have been so lonely by my side. We were building kingdoms and chasing dreams and left love behind.
I’m praying God will help our broken hearts align and we won’t give up the fight.