You know that week between Christmas and New Years, when everyone is off work but all the Christmas parties are over, and you just kind-of sit around and feel disoriented and pig out on leftovers and forget what day of the week it is?
That’s what this week in Minnesota has been like.
Well, not exactly. I can’t think of anything that describes what it’s been like exactly. Maybe if New Years were a sad holiday instead of a happy one, and maybe if you didn’t quite know when New Years would come, but no one could go home or go back to work until after New Years had happened.
Yeah, okay, that analogy doesn’t quite hold up.
In any case, it has been a strange week. I came here feeling sad that Grandpa was dying, but I’ve come to regard death as a beautiful, blessed mercy.
If only Grandpa would die, he could go to heaven and hang out with Grandma, and Lenny, and his parents and siblings. He wouldn’t have to endure the terrible pain he feels in his right arm. He wouldn’t have to feel the shame of his children and granddaughter changing his diaper. No longer would he feel the awfulness of having thoughts but being unable to communicate them.
Please, God. Please just take him.
What do we do? What do we do with our lives back home? We can’t just leave Marcus and Anna to care for him alone. Do we put him in a nursing home? Are there even openings in nearby nursing homes? But poor Grandpa, in a nursing home!
“We were not given a map for this journey,” Mom said on Facebook.
So true. So true.
How long will we remain in Minnesota?
Honestly, I have no clue.
But I should say, before I go, that I’ve been incredibly blessed by the amazing comments on my blog, and on Facebook. And by my friends who have reached out, asking how I am, and saying they’ll pray for me. I know I haven’t responded to nearly everyone, and I’m sorry. I keep forgetting that the Internet exists, and that online communication exists, which is weird since it’s not like I’m doing much here in Minnesota.
Dad called the other day and said, “Did hurricane Dorian hit you?”
“No,” I said. I thought that was a weird thing to say. I didn’t realize he was making a joke.
“Next thing you know, Trump will be saying that the hurricane is going to hit Minnesota,” Dad chuckled.
“Huh?” I was quite confused.
“You didn’t hear about Trump saying the hurricane would hit Alabama?” Dad asked.
“No, sorry. I guess I haven’t really kept up with the news and stuff since I’ve been here.”
“You didn’t miss much,” said Dad.
We’ve also been tremendously blessed by the people at Grandpa’s church that keep bringing us food. We’ve started calling them “the magic fairies.”
“Who re-stocked the fridge with eggs? And where did all this banana bread come from?”
“I guess the magic fairies brought them.”
My Aunt Anna is responsible for some of these blessings, but when we thank her, she deflects and says that it’s church people giving us these things. She just places them downstairs for us.
“If there were magic fairies like that at my church, I think I’d leave my car doors unlocked all the time,” Uncle Rod said.
“Well you still have to lock your doors in late summer, or else your car will fill up with zucchini squash,” said Anna.
We all laughed.
It is good to be with family, it really is.
But it’s a hard journey, and we have no map.