The first thing I had to do was to find a doctor who would be willing to treat my
mother and understand my father. I found just the one. I made a consultation appointment and laid out my mother and father’s problems. I was careful not
to make it my doctor. The Dr. was an angel of mercy, and he thanked me for preparing him for what he was about to inherit. I then had to go with my mother to her appointments. I upset her whenever I shared information from her past.
But I wanted her to know there would be no more secrets. Not with this doctor.
So once again, I became my mother and father’s caretaker. I did my best to keep them at arm’s length, but no one’s arms are that long! First there was the issue of my mother’s driving. My father said she steered but he told her where and how to drive. I knew there was some truth to that.
Once, for some reason I can no longer remember, or choose to forget, they came to visit me before the move. On the way from Milwaukee, my mother missed her turn on the 80/90 bypass. My father yelled, and without looking or thinking, my mother veered into the path of an oncoming semi, trying to get to the turnoff. My father said “my door was ripped off and I felt the wind from the
semi tire on my leg. I thought we were a goner!”
We received a call to pick them up and Michael drove a couple hours to get them, along with their dog. Their car was totaled, and they were covered with glass from head to toe when they arrived. They stayed with me for days and the stress of having them in the home gave me the incentive to start walking. It was a smart way to get out of the house and as a result I lost 60 lbs.!
One day at work, I got a call from my mother. They were fighting about her wanting to take the car and drive alone to a hairdresser a few short miles away. I had to get off the phone so told her to just go ahead. Hours later no one knew where she was. Mother had left the hairdresser and never arrived home.
What could I say to my father? I panicked when I realized it was my fault she was lost! I began to pray and pray, storming heaven to find my mother.
A short time later I got a call from her. She had been lost for sure. She didn’t know what to do so she stopped the car and just sat there. Out of the blue, a young man pulled up alongside her and asked if she was lost. He then proceeded to “lead her home”. What a mighty God we serve! I always felt that an angel was sent in response to my prayer!
WHAT WILL I DO?
Having my parents back in my life was beyond stressful, but not without its unique moments. Like the time they decided to go to church with me.
Despite how they made me feel, my parents were proud of me. One Sunday I sang a solo and at the end? My father stood to his feet and said to a congregation of hundreds of people, “that’s my daughter!”. I crawled off the stage. On another Sunday my father went to shake the pastor’s hand and said, “hell of a sermon pastor, hell of a sermon!”. I never knew what he would do next. But was pleased to see something was happening in his heart. I could never remember him going to church my whole life, so his new interest had to be good.
I occasionally took my mother with me to the store, but I rarely saw my father
alone. That is, unless something was causing him to be angrier than usual and he wanted my help to “put her away”. My father still liked to control my mother and had, on occasion taken her pills. She would call the Dr. to try and get more. This time he told her no and said that he wanted me to take charge of her medication. If I refused, he wouldn’t treat her. She called me and told me so.
I was so upset. My father would not like my interference, that is for sure. I went to bed that night and had all but decided I would not do it.
That night I had a dream about two small children. They were in a dangerous place filled with barbed wire and broken glass. I felt sorry for the children and then the devil appeared. He was intent on harming the children. I scooped them in my arms and miraculously, we were in a beautiful meadow filled with bright yellow daisies. I put down the children and the devil appeared once again.
I stood to my feet and with authority told him to GO! He was not to harm the children, and with that, I woke up.
That morning while showering, I began to pray and asked the Lord about the dream. He spoke clearly to my heart and said, “The children in your dream are
your parents. The devil means to harm them. But you can help them.
It is your choice, however. If you decide you no longer wish to help them, you do not have to.” I knew I could not say no, I did love them even if I didn’t want to
continue being responsible for them.
I called the Dr’s office that very day, and took over my mother’s medication.
That released anger in my father like I had never experienced.
He would scream at me and slam the door in my face, but I ignored his
outbursts. I told him that I loved him and mother, and only wanted to help. I
also came to realize that much of his anger towards me was because he was
so fearful. If I helped him to find a solution for his problem, he seemed to be less angry.
AND JUST LIKE THAT, A MOMENT OF SANITY
I will never forget opening the door and there he stood, my father. He was visibly upset so I asked him to sit down at the kitchen table so that we could talk. My father poured out his heart to me as tears streamed down his face.
He knew his life was a mess and he wanted to get things straightened out.
I told him about God’s love for hm and His desire to come into his heart and life. There and then, he prayed the sinner’s prayer with me. He repeated after me: “dear Jesus, I am sorry for my sins. Please come into my heart and forgive me for my sins. I want to serve you with the rest of my life. I want you to be Lord of my life. In Jesus Name, Amen.”
My dad laughed with me, and he cried with me. For the next few weeks he came over to my house. We talked about the Bible and his desire to do what was right. For a very short time I had a dad! He loved me and I loved him. We hugged. It was one of the most amazing experiences I ever had. My dad asked Jesus into his heart! I loved being with him!
AND JUST LIKE THAT, A MOMENT OF INSANITY
I called my mother to share the good news. She didn’t believe a word I said. She said that it was all an act. I shared everything with her. I told her about the time we sat at the kitchen table, sharing the Word of God. The times of prayer. And how excited I was to have a real dad, for the first time in my life. Nothing I said made a difference, she wouldn’t believe me. I suspected that she felt threatened, her position as the abused woman was threatened. If he changed who could she blame for the choices she made?
And then, about three weeks later, I lost my dad once again. Little by little, the light faded in his eyes. His fears returned and My dad suffered another mental breakdown and ended up in the hospital. My heart was broken. I couldn’t help him. He once again slipped away. But this I knew; the Lord heard His prayer. I
knew, in those few short weeks of sanity, my father, my DAD had become one of
God’s children. No matter what happened in the future, I knew the man inside of that madman would spend eternity with God.