Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Yes...I think it's official...

...I'm a part of the 'sandwich generation'.

Things have been crazy...they've been crazy for the past few years...but now it's getting even crazier. I've just been initiated into a new stage of life...the 'sandwich' stage. Let me explain...

My father passed away in 2002 and up until last year my mom was doing well. Then in the summer of 2007 she had a spinal fracture due to osteoporosis. This type of fracture is extremely painful and from what I learned the pain pretty much doesn't ever subside. It may decrease, but I don't think it ever goes away and you are left with chronic pain.

Mom's fractured healed after about 3-4 months and things improved, but she has been suffering from chronic back pain ever since. In turn, this chronic pain caused her to tumble into a depression. After months of concern and worry my siblings and I finally took action and confronted her...and man oh man...this was difficult to do. None of us has a confrontational type of personality and we struggled for days with this issue. But finally after many discussions with each other, with close family friends, phone calls to the doctors office and...probably more imporant than anything...lots of prayers...the opportunity presented itself and we opened up and shared our feelings.

Whew!! Finally we all exhaled!

Then the day after everything was brought out into the open--of her own volition--Mom called her doctor, talked about what was going on and he prescribed her some depression medication. Thank goodness!! Now we play the 'wait and see' game...hopefully things will work for her.

Meanwhile...through all of our struggles last week my siblings and I realized that we have become the 'parents' to our mother. Not an easy thing to admit out loud. But this is our reality. All I can say is 'thank God I have someone to share this responsibility with!'

After dealing with everything that went on last week and letting all the dust in my head settle I recalled a quote I read in a book called 'Traveling Mercies' by Anne Lamont.

'Courage is fear that has said it's prayers.'

Whew! That's quote says it all! We were in such a tough position...we didn't want to hurt our mother...she's been down enough lately and we were afraid we'd make it worse...but we knew we had to do something.

So after talking and talking and talking I told my sister that all we had left was to pray. Pray that something will open up for us...some window...some door...some opportunity will open up...present itself...then we can forge ahead. And guess what!! That's what happened! Out of the blue the obstacle that was in our way was removed and everything was brought out into the open. We said our prayers, believed that things would work out and, by way of some small miracle, they did.

So now that this mess has passed and I've discovered my place in this new stage of life I'm sure I'll have more experiences to share.

And...with crossed fingers...I'll keep ya posted on how things work out with my mom!

Until then...


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