Everyone Has Their Story - An Alzheimer Journey by Susan Scoggins

So often I am reminded of how blessed I am.  Even though Alzheimer disease is probably the most dreaded diagnosis of the century, there are so many who are facing trememdous challenges.  Just recently I met a man who’s wife was just  shockingly diagnosed with breast cancer.  Another young woman, with three children, who’s husband was diagnosed with ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease.  Then, there is the other young couple who have just conquered breast cancer but are now struggling financially after setting up their dental practice. There is not a person on this earth who doesn’t have a struggle to overcome.  Course, for some, the biggest struggle is what earrings to wear or what size TV to get.  But, rest assured their time will come.  It’s what makes life, LIFE!

As Jerry has been steadily declining, I have struggled with keeping a balance.  The closer he comes to passing, the more I realize that God has saved the best for last.  The more that death becomes a reality, the more that God becomes a reality.  God has permeated my every being...something I wouldn’t have experienced if life were all toasty, cozy and rosie.  The struggles have brought me close to a personal God who has walked before me and is saving HIS best for last in eternity...and it will be better than ever imagined.

With that promise, the struggles here seem to stay in their place among priorities. I couldn’t have said this years ago.  Even though I experienced the loss of my parents at a young age, I only realized a relationship with God in a small way. But, after this Alzheimer journey,  I am saying that I am so overwhelmed at what God has done for me.

I’ve been really missing Jerry lately.  Yes, he is still here physically, but he is, for the most part, gone.  There are times I want to scrape my voice together and, in desperation, say, “Come back!  Come back!”  But once I have my cry, I try to focus on the comical things.  Like when I taught at the unit and Ivan did not like the size pumpkin he got.  “Why, that won’t even make a pie!” he remarked in a grumpy tone.  Or when Lorette, because she is deaf, yelled, “GOD BLESS YOU!”  I love that!

That’s what I mean by being overwhelmed with such blessings.  I think without knowing God’s best is saved for last, I wouldn’t be able to laugh or smile quite as much.  So, after speaking with Jerry on the phone today, after hearing his nurse prompting him, after having my cry, I can pick up my brush and paint now.    My brush and pallet are waiting.