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4 years ago  ::  May 07, 2011 - 10:11PM #1
SecondSonOfDavid
Posts: 3,344
Today I got the news I expected but never wanted to hear; my mother's condition, vascular dementia, is worsening and the doctors have decided it is irreversible.   Long story short, my Mom had a series of falls, leading to hospitalization and a rehab clinic starting in 2009, but while she made some progress early, she regressed and cannot walk, stand, or even feed herself now.  Her body is, step by step, shutting down her voluntary muscle groups.

My daughter is eleven years old, and the question I have, is how I can help her understand what is happening and why, from a faith perspective. 

Thanks.
That which does not kill me, will try again and get nastier.
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4 years ago  ::  May 08, 2011 - 1:08PM #2
Theo
Posts: 4,691

My approach with my kids was to not shelter them from such realities. But to tell them that they can help grandma by being therefore her and showing her their love.


I think the world our kids live in is often times too far removed from reality. I took my daughter with me to Safeway once many years ago and we bought packages of hamburger and chicken. And I explained to her that this meat we were buying, and would eat someday soon, had once been alive. The hamburger had once been a steer (a cow is what I said) and the chicken had once been a bird - like a rooster. And I explained to her that people raise these and many other animals for food, and that this is the way of the world, and it's also how the animals survive. We have to kill and eat them in order to survive, and that is the way it has always been.


But in addition to that, all living things grow old and die sooner or later. That too is the way of the world we live in. Even our cars don't last forever, they ware out until they are no longer good for anything.


So when my daughter's grandmother's health declined, and she died, my daughter understood that this was the way of the world, and even though it hurt and she would miss her grandma, life would go on.


But in addition to these things I also explained to my daughter about heaven, and how those who believe in God and Christ, when they die, their spirits go to heaven to be with the Lord Jesus. And that was the thing that helped my daughter cope the most - to understand that her grandma was only dead in body, but that her spirit was alive to God. Indeed in the months it took for her grandma to die from her diabetes related issues, my daughter actually prayed that she would be permitted to die sooner - rather than hang on to the bitter end.


As Christians death should not be looked upon like the fearful grim reaper, but as the door from this life to the next. Indeed death can be a welcome change, in as much as declining health issues can make living in the flesh miserable. I have attended both the deaths of my wife's mother and my father, and in both cases as I prayed with them, I told them not to fight it and not to hang on - but to welcome it and depart this life in peace. We would remain here to take care of those they were leaving behind, so there was nothing to keep them here, and only the welcoming presence of Jesus and their departed loved ones waiting for them on the other side.


And in both cases, they died within hours of my praying for them and with them. It gave everyone in my family great peace seeing them just release their concerns and their spirits to God, and though it was a very sad day, there was a sweet side to it and the comfort of the Holy Spirit was with us all.


My daughter was with me when I prayed for her grandma, but was not there with her grandpa. But in both cases, she handled with their passings very well. You need not fear how your daughter will react if you help her understand how things work in the real world, and join that to our faith in God. Another thing I told my daughter, is that she will never be alone, and that her grandma will be watching her from heaven... so make her proud. Someday you will go to heaven too and you will be with her again.


~ Theophilus

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4 years ago  ::  Jun 17, 2011 - 10:02AM #3
voice-crying
Posts: 7,222

May 7, 2011 -- 10:11PM, SecondSonOfDavid wrote:

Today I got the news I expected but never wanted to hear; my mother's condition, vascular dementia, is worsening and the doctors have decided it is irreversible.   Long story short, my Mom had a series of falls, leading to hospitalization and a rehab clinic starting in 2009, but while she made some progress early, she regressed and cannot walk, stand, or even feed herself now.  Her body is, step by step, shutting down her voluntary muscle groups.

My daughter is eleven years old, and the question I have, is how I can help her understand what is happening and why, from a faith perspective. 

Thanks.



I'm sorry to hear about your Mother's condition.


My advise to you would be to allow your daughter to learn about the condtion (along with you).  And be there for your mom as much as possible so that your daughter will follow your lead.

"Death and life [are] in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof."Proverbs 18:21
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3 years ago  ::  Jun 21, 2011 - 1:33AM #4
Spookersview
Posts: 2

May 7, 2011 -- 10:11PM, SecondSonOfDavid wrote:

Today I got the news I expected but never wanted to hear; my mother's condition, vascular dementia, is worsening and the doctors have decided it is irreversible.   Long story short, my Mom had a series of falls, leading to hospitalization and a rehab clinic starting in 2009, but while she made some progress early, she regressed and cannot walk, stand, or even feed herself now.  Her body is, step by step, shutting down her voluntary muscle groups.

My daughter is eleven years old, and the question I have, is how I can help her understand what is happening and why, from a faith perspective. 



My suggestion is that you explain things to your daughter so that she understands what is going on.   Prayers for you and your family.


 


 




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