Last week brought some hard news. My mom, who has been struggling with short-term memory issues for well over a year now, received a diagnosis of dementia with Lewy bodies.
I had never heard of the disease, but apparently it is not rare and is the 2nd leading cause of dementia behind Alzheimer's. Lewy body dementia (LBD) is like a combination of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's with progressive degradation of cognitive and motor abilities. There is no cure.
My mom is fairly young for such a disease at age 60. Currently her symptoms are mostly mild (although she has been unable to work for a year due to them), and we hope that the disease will progress slowly for her, but there is no way to know. The average survival rate is 5 to 7 years after symptoms develop with most patients being unable to care for themselves in the last few years.
I spent the first hours after hearing her diagnosis grieving over what may become of my mom's mind and body, grieving over what she has already lost, and fearing the day she will be unable to care for herself.
After the grief came the "I don't want to." And that's basically what I told God. "You know God I'm hearing that you want to lead me down this path with my mom's diagnosis, but I don't want to go!" Throughout my childhood and early adulthood, my mom struggled off and on with manic depression which led her to bouts of alcoholism and prescription drug abuse, so I told God, "You know I think I've paid my dues caring for my mom." "And I have young kids, Lord. I don't want to be a part of the 'Sandwich Generation' caring for both a parent and kids."
But then something else began to wash over me. God allowed me to remember a Beth Moore Bible study I'd done ages ago (Believing God, maybe, sorry I did several of her studies during a 3 year period and am not sure which it came from). She talked about Matthew 17:20, where Jesus says, "if you have faith as a mustard seed, you shall say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it shall move; and nothing shall be impossible to you." Beth Moore's message was that when God gives you mountains in life sometimes you say "move" and He does, but sometimes He doesn't move it and He wants you to climb that mountain and see Jesus transfigured (as the disciples did in Matt 17:1-21) on top of it!
When I was diagnosed with cancer (lymphoma) nearly 6 years ago, I definitely went through the "I don't want to" phase and began referring to it as my "reluctant journey" with cancer. But during all the tests and waiting on results and then waiting to repeat the tests over 3 months to see just how bad it was, I got to a peace, a place with God where I could honestly say, "Okay, God, if you want me to climb this mountain, I will, but I am anticipating that I will see you transfigured on the top of it."
As it turned out, God moved that mountain before I even began treatment! He moved it so far off the horizon, in fact, that I don't even have to go in for check-ups with the hematologist.
I am well aware that God can move this Lewy Body Dementia so far from my mom that she, her husband, my brother, and I never have to deal with its ugliness.
But, I also know He may want us to climb that mountain instead, so He can reveal Himself in a huge new way.
Either way I'm trusting Him.
This post is part of the Moms' 30-Minute Blog Challenge.
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