Exodus 20:12 Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you.
As time passes, some of us come to the point in our lives where we are mothering our own moms. Medical issues can ravage the body too soon, or with the natural aging process, we are required to step up, sometimes when we ourselves are mothering youngsters.
My mother and I were blessed to have a very close relationship. When my mom was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, she faced a slow but sure decline. As her disease progressed, along with the anxiety and mental issues that can go along with this disease, I began to see a role reversal in mothering.
But wait…..I didn’t want this. I didn’t ask for this.
I had expected to enjoy the close relationship and companionship of my mom for many years to come. “God, why are you allowing this? My mom has always been so healthy and energetic.” When I would see what looked like mother and daughter having lunch or shopping together, laughing and having a good time, jealousy raged as I would think to myself, “That was supposed to be ME. How is this fair?”
Although Mom did not physically live under our roof with my family, I did orchestrate her care and made regular visits, while simultaneously taking over her finances (she was none too thrilled about that one!), coordinating doctors, refereeing conflicts between caregivers, and receiving phone calls at all hours. During my visits, it was as if she were drowning and reaching out to me to help her, to pull her up out of the water.
“But God! I didn’t sign up for this. I don’t have the right tools for this project! YOU didn’t GIVE me the right temperament for this job!”
I prayed. And I prayed. And I prayed some more. I told God I just wanted to glorify Him in my relationship with Mom, to show her Jesus; to reflect His love and compassion. God WAS there, helping me. I see that now.
The mother-child relationship reminds me of our relationship with our Father in Heaven because HE FIRST LOVED US. Why do we love God? Because He first loved us. Moms love their babies first. We in turn develop a deep love for our Moms.
As we take care of ailing parents, we will need God’s help, which He so freely gives. If you are caring for your elderly mother, I pray that you will enjoy the time you have with her, cherish the special moments that God gives you. The day will come when she will no longer be here on earth with you.
I would give anything for the PRIVILEGE of taking care of my mom … for just one more day.
She loved YOU FIRST. Now it’s your turn.
About Jackie Popovich ~~
Jackie is a wife and mother of two, living in Southern California. She is an Avon Lady and volunteer sound technician at her church. Her interests include yoga, fitness and nutrition, and her Happy Places are the beach and the mountains.
On a Personal Note ~~
Jackie and I met at the TaeKwonDo studio where our sons (ages 4 and 5 at the time) were students of the skillful art; her son (oldest child) and my youngest son have just graduated from college ~~ so that gives you insight to how long I’ve known this gorgeous woman of God. As far as I can remember, Jackie has always been the devoted and loyal friend, willing to lend a hand wherever and whenever she could. We’ve laughed and cried and sometimes laughed so hard that we cried! In Jackie’s company, I’ve always found a “comfy spot” to just lean back and at times lean on ~~ genuine Girlfriends are like that!