Even as my sweet mother’s memory slowly fades, one thing remains strongly present. Her faith in Jesus. Many times during the day (and night), I will hear her pray, “Jesus, help me.” She prays it as she walks from her bed to the bathroom, or as she tries to get her knees to cooperate with her as she travels from the kitchen back to her bed.
She prays as she sits up in bed at night in the brain fog of Alzheimer’s trying to figure out where she is and why she’s here. She implores the Lord for help when she cries out in pain in the middle of the night as her knees ache.
Not all of Momma’s prayers are cries for help. I have heard my mom thanking the Lord for helping her make it back to bed in spite of her knees wracked with pain. Yesterday she even quietly thanked the Lord for the salt on her potato chips because it “refreshes” her. I’ve heard her thanking the Lord for the people in the pictures hanging in her room – she tells Him she can’t remember their names, but she’s thankful for her family.
I am a light sleeper. Sometimes it feels like a bit of a curse, but I am learning to be thankful for it. I believe God allowed it for a greater purpose – that it is one of the ways the Lord has equipped me for the task of taking care of her in our home. I tend to hear everything at night. I hear the little stomping sound she makes when she puts her shoes on. I hear the squeak of her bedframe and can tell when she is just trying to get comfortable and when she is trying to get up. My ears pick up on the “scootch-scootching” sound of her walker as she makes her way around in her living space. I listen in the quiet of her sleepless nights and am blessed as she reads aloud all of the cards sent to her by loving friends and family. There are times when the Lord awakens me from deep sleep in the middle of the night so I will hear her quiet prayers and cries for help.
I thank God for “bending down” to hear the prayer of His child…and for allowing me the privilege of oftentimes being an answer to my dear mother’s prayer in this season of her life with Alzheimer’s.