my dad is facing a tough decision concerning his living situation, and my heart is aching for him. today is his 95th birthday, and he may have to separate from his wife, my step-mother, because of her deteriorating mental condition. it is not a choice he wants to make, but her care and her own family's abiity to care for her may force him to live apart from her. he is in excellent health for a person his age; his mind is keen and is able to care for himself and live independently. he still believes that he can provide care for his wife, but her worsening condition makes that impossible, and he is unable to accept what is happening.
soon i must call my brother and sister to advise them of what is happening and to solicit their help in coming to a decision on how best to help our dad. then, we must find a way to approach him so that he sees that what he wants to happen is not going to happen and to provide whatever support we can to help him decide on his own future. he is strong but i know that his heart will break if his wife must go to live near her family. such an event will mean that he will probably never see her again, and, if he does, she may no longer recognize him. already, she has periods when she does not know him, and the doctors say that these periods will become more frequent and long-lasting.
it's tough when someone you love will be put in a situation where you are powerless to prevent them being hurt and there is little you can do to ease their suffering. i suppose in my dad's case, the best we can do for him is to let him know we hurt with him and for him, and that we will try to find a new home for him that will enable him to live securely near one of us.
my prayer today is that all those who are going through changes in their lives that they wish could be avoided will find the inner strength to deal with those changes. may they think clearly and choose the best path, and may those of us who love them support and care for them in whatever ways we can. shalom.