On the way home from the hospital this evening I was listening to the radio. A guy was talking about plastic and reconstructive surgery. One of the striking things he said was that men are becoming concerned with appearances. They can no longer retain their positions in organizations just by the fact that they are male. They have to remain looking vital and vigorous. Apparently women in business have known that their appearances are important but men are just learning this. So men are turning to reconstructive surgery to obtain the look they want.
It sounds like the appearance of being young and vital is becoming more important than the results of one’s work efforts. Pretend, pretend. Make things look good and it doesn’t matter what is under the cover.
Aging is not particularly fun. Parts hurt and we start to sag and wrinkle. But what about the passing on of stories and wisdom from the older to the younger generations? What about knowledge that isn’t embodied in some pretty human package – has it less value than if it comes from someone who looks good? Have we become so superficial that we don’t look beyond the surface anymore?
It has been tough for me dealing with all that has been going on health wise in the family over the past couple of days. Just a bit emotionally stressful. I feel the pain of my close family members too. It is hard not to try and carry their problems in my pocket as well as my own. Sometimes I put too much in those pockets and then I tend to come a bit unraveled at the seams. That is sort of how I was feeling by this morning.
I went to church looking forward to some time to pray. Instead of peace though I seemed to hear a lot of noise. And that is how life has been lately – noisy – stuff taking up my time and attention; demanding my time and attention. At home, people around, demands on my time from visiting at the hospital, spending time talking with my aunt, social obligations from work, kids visiting, mother chores like groceries and laundry – all stuff that had to be done. It just seemed that there was no time to breathe. So I was looking for some space to breathe this morning, some peace, but mostly what happened was just the stuff that goes on in life.
It is hard to see where God is in the midst of days like this. I am glad I just know he is in spite of the way life goes on. And I am glad for friends who help me see him in their caring for me.
Having a little yelling match with God doesn’t cut down on the noise. I do not like the thought of ending my life like my dad – with Alzheimers. I don’t like the thought of what that would mean to my family. I wish God would just let me have things my way. I want to be in control. I would like to decide how it is all going to end – you know with dignity, a wise woman respected till the end, a sharp mind. Is that too much to ask?
I wish I could say that now it is all resolved in my mind. That somehow I have said “OK, God do whatever you like even with my end years.” But, in fact, this is something I am going to have to learn to trust him with. I’m not there yet.
So God, teach me more about you. Help me to trust. Be patient with me please.
Spent some time up at the hospital with my step-mom and dad. Dad’s got some bleeding from somewhere causing his hemoglobin to get dangerously low. So he’s getting transfusions and will be in the hospital for awhile. Now to decide just how far to go in treatment. Dad has Alzheimers and will not get better from that – not here in this life. And when death is not the end – is it fair to him to hold him here where the best we can obtain from aggressive treatment is a few more years of deterioration? I, personally, would rather be set free. I am glad he has a living will. We know that this is pretty much how he felt too. Still decisions on degrees of aggressiveness of treatment are not easy ones.
I went for tea to my step mom’s after being up at the hospital. I am growing more and more thankful that God sent her into dad’s life after my mom died. We sat and talked for a long time. About dad. About loss of companionship. About how my dad lived life fully till he couldn’t any more – and about how he still will sometimes say he would like to head off on some new adventure. How she is thankful for the good years they had.
She is a blessing. God give her peace and a good rest tonight. Bless her with wisdom in the days to come.
Lost a patient today. Well they had hardly become patients really. They were late for their appointment so 15 minutes after the appointed hour the reception staff called them to see if they had forgotten and would they like to rebook. We must have touched a nerve! They had been just leaving and if we wouldn’t see them they would just find another place to go. Since the appointment time booked had been for 20 minutes and there was no way they would be at our office within the scheduled time we though we were being fairly courteous calling them as a gentle reminder that they had forgotten an appointment. Instead we were berated for running on time! Hard to figure some people out.
What really hurt – and at the same time was ridiculous – was the accusation of the mother that we were just being rude to new immigrants. I assured her that actually we expected all of our patients to be on time for their appointments. But I wonder if we missed some cultural clue here? Different cultures do handle time in different ways.
Today was not a good day in the dental sense – for me personally. On the weekend I was eating something and felt an ominous crunch. The tooth that crunched was the one that recently had a post and crown. I knew exactly what had happened. I hoped it hadn’t but, well, I was pretty sure. A vertical fracture down the root. No hope to salvage that one.
Today the diagnosis was confirmed. As I sit here writing, the upper left side of my face is slowly awakening.
Just a few complicating factors are putting off the inevitable – my huge sinuses surrounding about half the root and a partner who chose to do the prudent thing and let me see an oral surgeon to have it out. So I am minus the crown and awaiting an appointment. It can take a year to get in to that office.
The gap feels pretty weird.
Reading over at the Ooze – an article by Jeff Dyer. Here’s an excerpt. Read the whole article here.
“Perhaps my abysmal, hurtful experiences of a lack of community have shaped my outlook, but I fully believe that formation of a community is an integral part of the Gospel. As Paul said, “We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well” (I Thes. 2:8). The Church needs that kind of aggressive community, led by transparent pastors willing to lead by sharing our very lives with others.”