There is something spiritually uplifting about visiting someone whose life has taken a turn for the worse. Having a meal, sharing a book, or having an experience with a mutual friend or an acquaintance will keep the visit alive and off of the ailment or trauma that the person is going through.
My wife and I recently took two road trips to visit out of town relatives who are going through something unpleasant. One is young. The other is closer to my age. In both cases, we took a book as a gift, shared some family photos, and went out to eat. In each case the visit renewed the relationship and the meal kept the mood open with no one having to be interrupted or distracted by having to cook.
We are all subject to going through life’s experiences and you may wonder what a visit and sharing can do for you. After the two visits, I got the feeling that the visit was appreciated. After all is said and done, the spiritual uplift goes to both the visited and the visitor.
In the case of the younger person we visited where they were suffering an ailment when life has not seemed to be complete, the spirit is different and often unanticipated. The other person we visited is older and life’s experiences have been numerous and seemingly complete, therefore, ailments are more often anticipated.
I have been sick and needed to recuperate at home, and I have memories of my dad’s ailments that kept him convalescing at home and seeing my mother convalescing in a nursing home. Visits and meals are all part of the visitation experience.
Daddy didn’t have a lot of visitors, maybe because my mother didn’t like the visitors, for whatever the reason, she would turn them away. I thought that was cruel, and because he could no longer drive his car, I bought him a three wheel bike to get out of the house so he could go to his favorite coffee shop around the corner to be with his friends.
My Mother’s convalescent home room on the other hand was full of pictures of family, cards and visitors of family and friends. These expressions of love and pictures ﬁlled her walls and her long-term inability to communicate was noted as she would have had fewer visitors if she could have told them to get lost. My sister would bring a CD and play special messages by her favorite preachers. My sister would also play music for her, read the scriptures to her, and monitor the treatment by the staff. At one point my sister was unhappy with the way mama was being treated and she called the Sheriff. My mother’s health and well-being was my sister’s ministry. I helped as best as I could, being over one hundred miles away.
I don’t know if I ever said thank you to my sister for taking care of our parents through their years, if not, I am saying it now, “Thank you Edith.” You were amazing and I see it in your girls and how they are taking care of you as you reach your “golden years.”
We must all ask ourselves who will take care of us as we take our place in the getting “old” line? If you have daughters they will take care of you. Some sons will too, but generally sons will check up on you and see about you. Now is a good time to think about who may be there for you.