I got a preview of what care is all about. Charles, Elizabeth’s dad who suffers from the effects of mini strokes and Parkinson’s, came to us on a one way ticket from England. His wife needed a reprieve and Elizabeth stepped in unconditionally.
She dressed, fed, washed, peed, and walked him. She took him to the doctor and to the senior center. She was his caregiver, friend, mother and daughter all in one. She let time go slowly when she was with him.
One night during the Hurricane, Charles got confused and fell down a flight of stairs. He got really banged up and ended up in the emergency room. He seemed so vulnerable and helpless, but also so well cared for.
This care was not coming from let’s-do-the-right-thing-and-check-it-off-the-list kind of thinking. It had too much grace and patience for that. This came from a place of absolute care. It was love and awe for those who witnessed it.
Sooner or later we’ll all be vulnerable like Charles. Who will take care of us then? Will our children take their station in the cycle of life and experience the privilege that comes with giving unconditional care, or will they outsource it to a facility?
Not sure what will happen, but our children got some schooling on how it’s done.