Love Never Gives Up: My Dad’s Devotion to Mom

Gina Flores
Caregiver Advocate | Shield HealthCare
02/11/16  1:25 PM PST
love never gives up

Who’s ready to read a beautiful love story?

In this daughter’s touching story about her dad’s devotion to her mom, we see a heart full of love that never gives up.

Love Never Gives Up | Story by Barbara H.

When the ambulance arrived, it signaled the end of life as we knew it. A new chapter was beginning, a story yet untold. None of us were sure we would like the ending. A raging infection took the legs out from under Mom; she couldn’t walk. No matter how much we willed it to be different, the facts were the facts. In June 2014, Mom began a journey of hospital stays, an extended stay at a nursing care facility and then a short time at home before breaking her pelvis. Late in December, Dad said, “She’s coming home.”

Remodeling work was done to accommodate her wheelchair and hospital bed. So much was changing so fast, but through it all, my dad’s love and commitment to Mom never skipped a beat. On the days when our hearts were breaking, Dad was still filled with hope. His heartache was shared with God after we went to sleep. My dad moved from breadwinner to caregiver in his retirement years.

Dad took on roles and skills I didn’t even know he possessed. Who knew that my father was such a good cook? Apparently Dad had some hidden skills we didn’t know about. Tirelessly, he was her advocate. When evening came, Dad reassured her of his love before going home alone. A few times my phone rang late at night. When I answered thinking something was wrong, Dad would apologize and say, “I was just kissing your mom good night.” Her photo was his screen saver. My heart was touched by his love and devotion.

True to his word, we started 2015 off with a bang. Mom came home on New Year’s Day. The celebration in Times Square on New Year’s Eve paled in comparison to the celebration in our hearts. We were entering a whole new chapter of our lives. Dad would be Mom’s primary caregiver. She trusts him to do what is best for her, even when she doesn’t always understand. Mom lights up when Dad walks into the room. Whether he has been gone for five minutes or many hours, she only has eyes for him. He loves to tease her and make her smile. A hug and a kiss are life-giving and provide nourishment to her soul.

Although they can no longer share the same bed, Mom’s hospital bed and Dad’s new twin bed are right next to each other, close enough that he can reach over and touch her to reassure her of his presence. Sometimes Dad’s snoring will wake Mom. She will tell him to roll over because he’s snoring. Some things don’t change. Even when Mom has a challenging day, Dad perseveres. Love does that.

It walks through the deep waters and climbs the highest mountains. We thank God every day that Mom is home and not living in a care facility. Dad feeds her breakfast in bed and then professional caregivers tend to Mom’s more personal needs.

Mom’s sense of humor brightens our days. Laughter can make an undignified procedure more bearable. When so much has been taken away from her, her faith and her husband have helped Mom maintain her dignity and perspective. Her four children and husband are part of the team that loves and cares for Mom. With a nightly phone call, I get a recap of the day’s events. If Mom is still awake, I have the blessing of hearing her voice. What is the greatest reward of caregiving? Laughter, love and letting go of my script of what life should be. Miracles happen every day. A smile. A precious memory. Standing up, even if only for a moment.

Love never gives up.

Read more inspirational caregiver stories in the the Shield HealthCare Caregiving Community.

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