On the day before her 88th birthday my mother fell at her assisted-living facility and suffered a concussion and multiple strokes.
Thank God she survived. But her mental and physical abilities were severely limited.
I flew from my home in Dallas to the facility in San Antonio to be with her. I knew I couldn’t stay forever, but I wanted to. Mom had always been there for me.
Can the staff here take good care of my mother now that she’s so helpless? I worried. I didn’t want to leave without knowing Mom was in good hands.
I slept in the room with her for two days, and still my worries hadn’t stopped. On the third morning, sitting in a chair by her bed, I began to pray.
Long ago my mother had taught me not to ask God for what I wanted, but to ask instead for his strength and guidance. “Where you lead me, I will follow,” I prayed.
It made me think of that old hymn, “Where He Leads Me, I Will Follow.” The tune got stuck in my head. “Where he leads me, I will follow…” I began to hum out loud.
How’d the rest of it go? Oh, yes: “He will give me grace and glory; he will give me grace and glory.” Singing those words in my head comforted me. Grace and glory. I couldn’t let my worries shake my faith. I would just have to trust that Mom would be okay, as hard as that was.
Just then, there was a knock on the door. Two nurse’s aides walked in. “We’re here to help your mother take a bath and get her ready for the day,” one of them said.
They took my mother gently by the hand and helped her out of bed, making sure she got her footing before they led her to the bathroom. All the while, the aides talked to my mother like a person, not a patient. I was impressed by how professional and kind they were. How could I have not appreciated the staff here before?
When they were done with Mom, the aides turned to leave. “Wait a minute,” I said. “I just want to thank you two for taking such good care of my mom.”
“You’re welcome,” one of the aides said. “If your mom needs anything, we’ll be here.”
“I’m Gracie,” the other aide said. “And this is Gloria.”