Thursday, September 15, 2011

In Their Honor - I Forgive Myself...

 In Their Honor- I Forgive Myself

On year ago today I lost my little Mom. 72 days before that I lost my precious little Dad. It has been a year filled with the darkest depression as I have never known. I was totally unprepared for the grief that was fixing to invade my life.

In the 8 years that I took care of Mom and Dad there were some wonderful times and there were a few hard times. As the years passed by their care became more and more demanding and I became more and more exhausted and overwhelmed and yes some days angry.

I allowed some outside influence to determine my attitude sometimes and although thought myself to be more discerning than that, I allowed the enemy to invade the camp and bring turmoil.

I was thrown into being a caregiver

and had to leave the daughter relationship in shadow of taking care of pills fixing 3 meals a day, doctor appointments laundry sickness in the middle of the night.
Day after day as the demand grew to mega proportions the last 6 months was more than any one person could even think to do. However, I was dog determined to keep those two little people together to the end of their days.
Maybe that was unreasonable, maybe, but in the end, with the help of the Lord, no no, with a LOT of help from the Lord they lived side by side with the exception of the 72 days between their death and I am THANKFUL to the Lord that HE allowed me to accomplish that.

I made mistakes and I had days that me and the personality differences between me and Dad were full blown. There were times that we did not speak for days. I allowed myself to become part of that and not rise above it. Me and Dad were like oil and water my entire life and when he was thrown into a patient, so to speak, relationship with me just caused that oil and water to become magnified.

We had our days.

I knew better, I was stronger than that. The deceiver became the stronger and I struggle with that. Tired and worn out and vulnerable to his influence. There were some days that I just did not rise above it.

There were not many of those days but of course the enemy enhances those memories and not the multitude of days that we laughed.

This past year has gone by so very quickly,

I really do not know where the days have gone. I have accomplished nothing. I have not read much or worked in my shop much, I have not painted the inside of my house as I had planned. I have grieved and I wept bitter tears for my failure and for the loss of my Dad who was my best friend and my mom that always smiled and never spoke a harsh word. I have begged God to forgive me and begged HIM again and again to tell Mom and Dad that I am sorry.

The pain of regret, it is bitter and it is a hot poker that hurts our hearts each days as we allow it.

I am human,

I am a one dimensional creation serving a multifaceted multidimensional Creator that sees the beginning and the end where we only see the what lies just in front of our face.

HE is love personified in HIS son Christ 

who loves unconditionally and we love conditionally no matter how hard we try to do the opposite. We are flesh and flesh fails.

HE saw every day of those 8 years

long before I even knew that HE would ask me to do that. HE saw every mistake and ever argument and every tear long before we even had any idea that those years were upon us.

HE saw me, in my weakness

and my humanity and HE knew there were days that I would fail, HE knew that. BUT HE trusted me anyway. What a powerful thought, and it is that thought or should I say that reality that has began to bring healing to my heart. HE KNEW ......

BUT HE trusted me anyway.

Today, I am well on my way to healing and well on my way to picking out paint and beginning to create in my shop. I do not cry much and when I do it is just because I miss them so. The grief has become my teacher and in the midst of it all it has taught me that no matter how we fail and no matter the times that we miss the mark, HE believes in us and if we allow HIM ,

HE will bring forgiveness and healing.

Have you ever wondered how HE heals a heart? I have. It is not a heart of flesh that HE speaks to, or a heart of flesh that HE whispers sweet peace but a heart that only HE sees and only HE can touch.

We are unaware when in the midst of our storm that HE has already begun to heal, but as time passes we know, we feel HIM in the midst of the pain. HE begins to bring healing just as we have asked HIM to.

Today, my heart is healed
and I no longer feel the need to beg HIM for forgiveness, I no longer feel the need to beg HIM for assurance that they are home and safe and well. I no longer grieve for the past failures but I focus on the wonderful wonderful days that HE allowed me to become HIS servant and love those little people as they made their way to being at home with HIM.

Now the task before me, to forgive myself.
To allow myself to be human and understand that no matter how hard we try, we are going to fail as long as we reside in this flesh and blood body.

Today I honor the memory of my Mom and Dad.
I honor their lives with forgiving myself. I honor their lives by living mine. I honor them by forgiving those that caused harm and tears and hurt me during those hard years.

I honor them by being the best I can for my life and I honor them for knowing that I did my very best by them and in the end, they knew that.

I honor you Mom and Dad. You were wonderful kind and loving parents, and I miss you so..



Cora from Hidden Riches said...

Oh, Denise!!!!! The tears are rolling down my cheeks. I wish I could be with you right now and share these moments. Do I dare say that understand???? I still stand in complete awe of the fact that God saw me -- all of me -- back then, all the ugliness of me, and He trusted me, walked with me, and LOVED me just the same. I know the feeling of your burden being lifted today, and I rejoice with you in all of this. And God is smiling, my friend!!!!!

Tammy said...

This was beauitful! I think it was wonderful that you took care of you parents,despite the hard times. I can tell you loved them deeply!

I only have my father-in-law (84yrs)left as past of my family and I'm always reminding my husband...there will be a day when he will be going home with Jesus.


"Just Me - NC Beth" said...

Oh, Denise....bless you! I too felt the same way for so long....but I have peace now..for the most part. Every once in awhile it will rear its ugly head...but only briefly.

Thank you for sharing this....

Joyce said...

Hey Denise, Dear friend do NOT be so hard on yourself. And I know you have said you've forgiven yourself...and it's always the right thing to repent and clear the slate so to speak. But you didn't do anything wrong honestly...we all loose patience with our loved ones from time to time, especially in situations like this where you are forced into a "Caregiving" spot. The Lord knows your heart...and He does love you and yes, He does forgive you for anything you think might have been unpleasing in His site.
I just want you to go on and be happy...I know it's very lonely losing not just ONE but BOTH of your parents. But you did all that you could...
I too feel guilt because I don't even live near my parents and they are becoming older and frail. We all just can only do whatt we can do. The Lord know our limitations and what we are all about. So I trust Him for when their "time comes" that it will all work out.
Hang in there will see your folks again. That's something, that isn't coming to happen for me unless a miracle takes place. And it could!

Lanae Photography said...

I know you did a fantastic job with your parents. You have such a generous heart. Now live your life and be happy! Miss them, cry for them and enjoy the memories. Just don't forget to keep making more! I love you!

Mathew:25.24 said...

As I read your inspirational words!! I hear something!! I think with you!! I put myself in your life as much I could!! I hear something!!! - GRACE!!! Grace and GRACE!!!! I need to read Again as Indian!!( I NEED TO see what Really God wants me to say to me!! Friends you may think why I say God wants to speak to me from this!! – In 2005 I read this blog in one beautiful morning! I was touched by the blog!! It’s said!! That Samaritan woman dare to speak to the master!!)

Now let me read again!! And will come back with excitement!! Hey Denise You made a mark in my heart!! That every child of God should do what you did!!

Life which is totally committed to God has nothing to lose , nothing to fear, and nothing to regret!

Mary said...


You are a good daughter. You took care of your parents exceptionally well and should have no regrets. We do our best and that's all that can be asked of us. Praying for the healing to continue.


Sweet Cottage Dreams said...

my dear, dear friend.....please know that our Father only gives us what we can handle and he KNEW that you could handle taking the role of the caregiver. because of the differences, never be harsh on yourself, please don't do that to yourself. we are only human, as you said. humans all have differences, yet you persevered. YOU are the angel here. GOD so loves you and he KNEW that you would LOVE His children - your parents - in their last days. never believe that the enemy caused you strife....just know that you were taking care of those who you loved, no matter the turmoil. our Father is a loving Father, and only He knows our future. i do believe that He knew what your heart held, that is why He put you in charge for those 8 years. i wish i could come over and hug you right now, but know that i am beaming in JOY knowing that you are such a wonderful person, and moreso, the VERY BEST daughter that ANY parent could have EVER asked for. a very special crown awaits you...along with your parents. i do hope that we can meet on earth, but if that time never happens, then i will see you in the Heavens! hallelujah, JOY be to God, our Father!

***peace to you, sweet lady, peace to you - always******


❀~Myrna~❀ said...

I can relate , my mom died in May . I am approaching a lot of firsts in the coming holidays , the first this & that without mama. I am already feeling depression , I see dark days a head . But I am relying on Jesus all the way . When someone dies , & especially when we know they have gone to be with the Lord . All thing are reconciled ,all things are forgiven & put right in Heaven .All tears are wiped away, new bodies , new hearts & minds , we will be what we were meant to be. When we see our loved ones again it will be a glorious reunion!

Fitter After 50 said...

Growing up my relationship with my folks was rather non-existent. A few months before my Mom passed away and after having a unique dream, I called them to ask them to forgive me for not being the daugher they wanted/needed. My Mom said that "It was just the circumstances." She understood. I'd like to encourage you with the same encouragement she gave me. "It was just the circumstances." I believe in their heart of hearts, your parents loved you no matter what. ((Hugs))

Karen said...

Oh, my sister...this was one of the sweetest and most poignant posts I have read in a long time...

As I followed your writings during the time your parents had to give up their independence and depend totally upon you...there was never a sentence or paragraph...that did not show evidence of a daughter's deep compassion and great love for her mom and dad...

I have laughed and cried at the stories and pictures you have shared...and agree wholeheartedly with the comment about a special crown awaiting you in heaven...

Yes, your parents were special treasures that God gave you...but He also gave them a priceless gift in YOU....

Donna said...

You were a wonderful daughter and your parents knew that you were! As caregivers we do get tired and our lives become consumed with doing the best we can for our loved ones.
I love that you have shared this with us. I always try to keep it real on my blog and writing about Amber.
I am glad you are feeling better and hopefully you can get back to doing the things you enjoyed. I know it is hard.
God is watching over us and our loved ones will be in our hearts forever! We will all be reunited again :)
Big Hugs,

Donetta said...

I love you. Be sure forgiveness is due. I am glad you are affording it to yourself.

Denise said...

Bless you for this beautiful tribute to your parents. They were blessesd in the way you lovingly cared for them. I love you my friend.

Lea said...

Heart FELT.*
And still even more grace....
God bless you dear Sister!