This particular update is actually the first seriously altering life event that occurred around these parts….um….maybe 4 weeks ago or more? Honestly, it has all sort of run together in a pile of not so good.

If you recall the movie, “The Lion King,” the theme of the Circle of Life was very prevalent. Life begins, life ends, and new life comes from old life….and so it goes. Life in the family, well it ought to be a circle; but sadly sometimes the circle gets broken(despite the best efforts of Johhny Cash.) We are born, and our folks care for us when we cannot care for ourselves; then someday the circle completes and we do the same for them.

At least, that is how things ought to be, but it’s not is it? No, not really. These days the old folks are just a big pain in the butt who we all wish would just die so we can get the stuff they are leaving us. Maybe that is harsh and extreme, but It does seem that way more and more. People are so busy amassing their own stuff that they just don’t have time to do for Moms and Dads what Mom and Dad did for them.

I might amaze readers to know that, in some places, the extended family is still a thing. We call it “living in a wad.” Clusters of houses compose of families are called fill-in-the-blank-ville down our way. So, the unbroken circle is still a pretty normal thing around here. Folks get old, and we take care of them because usually at least some of the younger generation sticks close.

I happen to be about 12 years older than my wife, so my own folks have both gone on to their particular place, meaning only my in-laws remain. Well, we woke up on day and realized that it was their turn.

My mother in law was scheduled for a semi-routine back surgery to get her back in action, and overall it went fairly well. Not perfect, mind you, but semi-okay. She did have to stay a few days on the hospital before to get her sugar normalized, as she had some kidney function issues holding back the surgery. Surgery went great! After was a bit problematic, as the pain medication did what it does….and she actually had to go BACK to the hospital for a few days due to some unfortunate plumbing issues, if you follow.

So, as my wife was taking care of her Mom in the hospital, her Dad sort of fell apart. He has COPD pretty bad, and he started out having some bad panic attacks. Talk about our self-fulfilling thing. He would have trouble with air, then he would get agitated, then MORE breathing issues…..and on it goes. So, she was tending to Mom and I was tending to Dad. This was all just about the time work went nuts as we talked about earlier. We were like the proverbial ships passing in the night during most of this, and most of what was to follow. Her brother would come to the hospital at night, and she would come home early in the morning. Later, early in the morning, I would leap out of bed to head out to work. So, hi and bye were about it.

Thank The Lord, Mom healed up and came home, but not at full speed at all. So, we pretty much stayed there to take care of the household business. I did the heavy lifting, my wife cooked, and our girl played the maid.

Then just when we thought we did, in fact, have the world by the tail; the tail came off. Dad fell in the bathroom in the wee hours of the morning, and the first couple of wheels flew off our lives. Stay tuned for all that. Some of it we have already talked about, though.

Here is the thing, though. God has stuck with us through all of this. God answers prayers. Put THAT in your pipe and smoke it, you haters and prayer shamers. Nobody was healed, I got fired, and the health issues got drastically and heartbreakingly worse. Yet, God has answered prayers, because getting what we want is not always the answer that God wills. How you say, was He there then? He was there… being there. Comfort, strength and the fortitude to go through some rough things with our head held high, knowing that we are in good hands were given to us in spades.

Despite the fact that wheels were wobbling, and soon some would fly off, the joy has not flown off. In fact, I say it has increased as we have come to the realization that we are in this together, and that we are in this with our God.

The circle won’t be broken here.

Next up, the final wheels come loose.