about writing and life and God

Dementia Diary 24: Afterthoughts

on November 24, 2012

We had a good day yesterday. I resigned from being-in-charge, Mrs Fix-everything. Instead I opted for God-in-charge, with me aiming for obedient trust. Letting go…

It worked. Amazingly. It always does. I think we humans must really be rather thick that we decide we’d prefer to run things ourselves and make a mess of it when such amazing Providence is at hand.

I’ve now given three talks on my experience of God’s amazing Providence sorting out the journey to Wick to visit my sister (see A lesson in trust) yet still I muddle through life being surprised when things go so much better when I hand over the reins to Him.

Yesterday I had a kind-of plan for our day out together. But when we got to Aldeburgh, the car-parking space we could find wasn’t for long enough to encompass a leisurely lunch. Of course, this niggled at me while we ambled round town, browsed the books in the charity shops, had a coffee – chocolate muffin for him, egg bap for me since I hadn’t had time for breakfast. (Non-vegan but delicious. Thank you, Munchies!) And as a result we weren’t all that hungry by our usual lunchtime.

What to do? He didn’t fancy any of the lunch places I’d walked him past, not even the fish and chips place that gets rave reviews. So I was at a loss. But I’d promised myself obedient trust.

‘How about Snape?’ I I asked. That needed explaining as he couldn’t remember Snape, but it appeared to have won approval so we got in the car and pulled back into the main street.

Which is when I decided it would be more fun to go the long way round. (I have a decided aversion to retracing my footsteps and prefer the scenic route when at all possible.) I like Aldeburgh beach and I love Maggi Hambling’s wonderful Shell sculpture, so we drove slowly past it, admiring the bright chilly blue sky and the hardy walkers.

John started reminiscing about family childhood holidays in the village we were approaching – Thorpeness. I was sufficiently relaxed to murmur peaceful encouragement even though I’ve heard several times the story of Quink the cat who dived under the holiday cottage the minute she was let out of her basket and needed to be lured out with cat food, John’s mother lying on her stomach, arm outstretched…

I’ve never eaten in Thorpeness. Don’t know the place at all. But as we rounded the bend out of the village, I noticed a line-up of cars parked outside the Dolphin pub/hotel. ‘Shall we try there?’ I found myself asking.

We easily found a parking place and as we walked round the garden to the front door, a girl came out with two dogs, one a basset hound the other an elegant greyhound. John is fascinated by dogs and always wants to know what breed they are. This time he declared the basset a rather podgy daschund. Their owner was cheerfully unfazed and chatted happily to us, putting us right in a friendly way.

And that was the beginning of a delightful lunchtime. We were welcomed, settled comfortably and well looked after. I was thrilled to discover some imaginative vegetarian dishes on the menu. I finally chose the leek and butternut squash crumble with pesto and feta cheese on top – very yummy. John’s locally-shot pheasant served on a bed of puy lentils and root vegetables looked brilliant and he enjoyed it.

Serendipity is one word for our find. Coincidence is another. But I don’t think so. I call it Providence and am very grateful.

And I’m sure we’ll be back.

But I need to keep practising ‘obedient trust’.

Text: ‘Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? And if you cannot do that, why do you worry about the rest?’ Luke 12: 25-26

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for how amazingly You look after us. Help us be more aware of Your loving hand guiding us and protecting us and providing for us.

Self-care suggestion: The key word is ‘surrender’. Giving up the ‘I must be in charge’ or the ‘I must do everything’ and first of all giving it all over to God (yes, there may well be tears!), and then letting Him take the reins. It really makes an enormous difference!


One response to “Dementia Diary 24: Afterthoughts

  1. And that is so for ordinary life and not just Alzeimers. Thank you Dorothy for the reminder – I neded that today.

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