The clouds have been full of rain, and they have emptied themselves upon the earth. (Ecc.11-3). Our hills have had showers of blessings, indeed; the sound of abundance of rain has echoed in our ears for the past few days.
Freshets of water gushed down the hillsides, splashing over rocks and swirling around tree trunks before spilling into the ditch lines and rushing into the creeks below. The creeks were rapidly filled to overflowing with angry, muddy water. As the creeks poured into Elk River, it began rising also with the gushing, rushing water.
The creeks have rapidly receded, and the rain seems to have almost ceased. Now spring can come in earnest.
This rainy weather has kept us cooped up in the house, sometimes with assorted grandkids and great-grandkids. I remarked to Mom the other day how lonely it would be without these little ones, and she agreed. I must confess that it is rarely lonely around here.
It is rewarding sometimes just to listen to them play. Lynnie (Matthew’s Belinda, who is five years old) sings lustily, “Row, row, row your boat, dimply down the street!”
Her father is running for the office of Clay County sheriff, and we wonder if politics is rubbing off on her. Her Aunt Patty was giving her a bath the other night, and poured a generous splash of bubble bath into the tub. Lynnie looked at the mounting bubbles and exclaimed, “I’m elected (allergic) to bubble bath!”
Patty was in the Mall recently with her two little granddaughters, Bekah (Rebekah, age four) and Savannah, who is going on two. They made a visit to the pet store, and the girls were enchanted. “Wook, Nana—there’s a parent bird!” Mystified, Patty asked, “What’s a parent bird?” Bekah replied, “You know—Polly want a cwacker! Polly want a cwacker!”
Sometimes I feel like a parent bird—or maybe a grandparent bird. The nest is full to overflowing many times. When my own children were growing up, we always had a house full of youngsters. Bert Drake, who worked for Clay Lumber Company at that time, asked me one time just how many children Criss and I had. I replied that we had six, wondering why he asked. “Well,” he continued, “I passed your house the other day and there were 17 in the yard!” That was about right.
Psalms 127-3 says, “Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord; and the fruit of the womb is his reward.” The Lord has provided us with a goodly heritage.
My mother is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, and sometimes she is like one of the little children. We are blessed in the fact that she is sweet and easy to take care of, although a lot of the time she is dwelling in the past. She has retained her sense of humor, and always has a feisty answer for everyone.
The other morning while she was still in bed, we were discussing her sister who recently died. “What killed Ruby?” she demanded. I tried to explain that Ruby was past 90 years old, and had cancer as well. I went on to say that the Bible only gives us three score and ten years. I’ll soon be 70, I added. (Actually, I am 68.) She looked startled and questioned, “Am I older than you?”
“Well, you are my mother, and you’d better be older than I am,” I answered. She looked more disbelieving, and asked, “I’m your mother?” I tried to explain, and told her, “Yes, you are my mother, and Larry’s mother, Mary Ellen’s mother; you were Mark’s mother (Mark is deceased), Ronnie’s mother, Jeannie’s mother, and Susie’s mother.” She looked at me a minute, then retorted, “No wonder I’m so tired!” Then she flopped over on her side and went back to sleep.
She is stiff and achy when she gets out of bed, and asked me once, “How come I feel so bad?” I told her gently that being 89 probably had a lot to do with it. She asked me in disbelief, “I’m 89? How did I get there so fast?”
I think we all feel like that. As we approach each stage of our life, we too wonder how we got there so fast. As Mom reverts more and more into her childhood, it seems that her life has turned a perfect circle. She is happy, and responds to the little ones in love. It is heart-warming to see how they hug and kiss her; even the youngest babies hold out their arms to her. It is as if they feel a bond with her that we cannot feel.
Mom’s life is swiftly nearing an end, and these little ones are just beginning. In between there seems to be a vast distance, yet it is gone so soon. Psalms 39-5 says, “Behold, thou hast made my days as an hand breadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee; verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity.”
We need to find God’s plan for our lives, and make the most of every day.
Give everyone big hugs for me,
Cousin Alyce Faye
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