Category Death and Dying

Love from a Distance

When Marshall was at the end of his life, he was surrounded by family. We smothered him with love. I am especially grateful to have held his hand through his last breath and my head close to his while listening intently to his final gasp. COVID has robbed families of this blessing. If your elderly […]

First Place Award for The Alzheimer’s Spouse

Whether fiction or nonfiction, quality books require diligent research, experience, wisdom, imagination, and years, if not decades, of time. From concept through publication and on through marketing, books are the offspring of authors. We live and breathe them. Most books have a life, a period of time in which they are relevant and of interest […]

Why We Suffer

“Grieving triggers a range of spiritual questions. We ask why ‘this’ happened to us. Why did it happen now? We want to know why we must endure such anguish and how long must we suffer. When our security is threatened, it’s not unusual to begin a dance with God. We bargain that we will do […]

Choosing a Memory Care Home Sight-Unseen

We may be sheltering in place but Alzheimer’s disease is not holding still. It’s doing what it always does. It progresses. There is no cure for this disease. Symptoms may be somewhat controlled with medication and behavioral modification, but loved ones’ health conditions continue to decline. Should the symptoms become unmanageable from the loved one’s […]

The Sacred Pit

After Jesus was scourged, he likely was held in a dungeon. Jerusalem marks a cave beneath the house of Ciaphas which may have been the one where Jesus was held. It’s thought that prisoners were lowered into dark, damp caves by ropes that were tied under their arms. The rope was long enough for prisoners […]

One Year Later

Life goes on. Our loved ones pass and it’s a day, a week, a year. Before we know it, it’s 21 years since we last kissed their cheek, as it is with my mother. Our loved ones are frozen in time. We remember them just as we saw them last. But we keep growing older, […]

God’s Curious Timing

God pushes us. The tougher the situations we’re presented, the more likely we’ll also be offered opportunities to use our God-given gifts to assist others in similar situations. I’ve been richly blessed as well as greatly challenged most of my life. But that doesn’t seem to be an excuse to slack off through my senior […]

The Long Inevitable Good-Bye

Marshall passed away 8 months ago today. His passage still disturbs me. Witnessing such a strong, active man decline over more than 15 years and then in the end to become so very frail, dependent on total care for every basic need, retching from drug withdrawal, and unable to communicate, was death by a thousand […]

Easing Our Way Out of this World

We don’t want to talk or think about it. It’s rarely pretty. Some fear what happens afterwards, and we’d rather cling to what we do know, even if it’s not all that great. Death scares most of us, partly due to the fact that those of us who witness loved ones dying often see them […]

The Other Side of Mourning

It’s an unusual kind of mourning. Friends who lost a loved-one to dementia before me told me that the mourning period after death would be different than typically occurs. It isn’t as if our loved one suddenly died in an accident or suffered from a physical illness where we could still speak with them until […]