about writing and life and God

Dementia Diary 19: A carer’s tears

on November 9, 2012

I started today in tears.

Not the carer’s kind – that rush of hopelessness, frustration, overwhelming grief. But hot tears pouring down my face all the same.

The cause? Onions.

Today being taking-John-out day, I decided I needed something comforting to come home to, and what can be more comforting than a pot of home-made soup? So on with the apron and start chopping… Remembering my mother-in-law Marjorie’s recipe for leek and potato soup, I prepped the leeks and a couple of cloves of garlic, then set to on an onion.

It was a very fierce onion and in moments, my eyes were weeping, my nose running – and of course with both hands oniony and garlicky, trying to get at my hankie was not easy!

An hour later, the tears are long gone. The soup smells heavenly and will be just perfect with good bread when I get home.

And isn’t this our story? We all have tears, but it’s not the tears that we remember as we look back. Instead we remember the happy times, the good moments. And even at this stage in my husband’s dementia, we can have good outings with smiles and laughter and a soupcon of the old sharing. So that’s what I’m hoping for today.

They say you can’t make an omelette without breaking a few eggs. Well, you can’t make a pot of leek and potato soup without chopping onions and producing floods of tears! And you can’t get through life without some sorrow and suffering, but we are promised strength to carry on and, at the very end, if we are followers of Christ, a very happy ending where there will be no more tears.

Text: Two today:

‘Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy’ Psalm 126 verse 5

‘The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces’ Isaiah 25 verse 8

Prayer: Lord, give us Your strength and comfort to see us through the sad and difficult times. Help us trust You and know that one day there will be an end to tears, that one day You personally will wipe the tears from our eyes.

Self-care suggestion: My motto tends to be ‘When in doubt/misery etc etc, make soup.’


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