My mother has had an extraordinary year and somehow survived it. The other day, she found a diary entry. The following words are hers.
Written in the midst of recovery and rehab after falling off my bike and two fractures in the pelvis and three in the wrist resulting in a plate. Three and a half weeks in hospital and six weeks with home care after returning home.
Added to this was the possibility of failing eyesight, when my second eye was diagnosed with wet macular, which had taken away the sight in my left eye.
Can I find a way to meet this new challenge, this extra disability. For yes. I am disabled. I hear perhaps 10% of conversation, lectures, discourse, chat, and now, my eyesight too, is dim.
My world, once sharp and clear and vibrant with song, and colour and clarity, is muted, damped down, edges dulled, disintegrating. I can’t remember what it was to step out, sure footed and light hearted. “Take care”, “hold rail” “look down” “the footpath’s out to get you.”
Care free. What’s that? Unthinking, devil-may-care, impulsive? Gone now, forever?
Would hiding in the safety of my home, no risk, be better than this half life?
Is the smile becoming fixed, a give away. That vacant, lost, bewildered look that usually only comes with senility.
Not gone in mind, though sight and sound have left me early, far too soon.
I must decide. These storms of sorrow washing over me to drown my essence. Can I push up the trapdoor of this thing that threatens me. Have I the strength or will to fight the demon of despair .
Count what you have, not what you’ve lost. You know that others have lost more. Yes. Much, much more.
What should I change? How do I embrace and prosper?
Look in, look out, look up, look here.
The things I used to do so well, now cause me anguish. What substitutes? What gifts and visions unexplored?
Show me O God, what plan you are enfolding. The years ahead must hold a treasure true, as yet uncovered and unseen, for grief and loss has hidden you from me.