I have a license with the state of Delaware to care for adults with disabilities.
I think I got my first license in 1984 or ’85. This one thing has defined our lives as a family in ways nothing else would have. It has changed us, softened us, sometimes frustrated us, and sometimes, I confess that there were times when I have prayed for strength, courage, compassion and a new work of grace. There were times when I didn’t want to hear, see, or smell anything that was a result of a disability.
But I’ve also stood on Holy Ground, over and over again, as I have realized (with shame and with sorrow) that my “retardation” before my Heavenly Father is of far greater proportion than ANY human being’s disability is in comparison to my own. And yet, He provides for me. He protects me. He cares for me. Most of all, He loves me. I do not begin to understand.
Sometimes, in the morning, I come down to yet another mess — where there are brown stains on the bed, and a nightgown lying on the floor with copious amounts of fecal matter upon it, or Cecelia is lying in a very wet spot, or has had projectile vomiting — and I don my gloves and wash things out or get Cecelia to the shower, and change the bed and get it clean and warm for her, and put her back in. Sometimes I think about the bed I just left, and the day that has started too early, and wish that there would be a way that what it has cost me could somehow be appreciated — just a little bit!
And then I think about my Heavenly Father, and how often He finds me with far more offensive things in my life, but he doesn’t hold back, He looks at me and sees the blood of Jesus, and it washes whiter than snow, and I am clean, and warm and acceptable to Him, and I enjoy the blessing of being part of His Family — and I really have no comprehension of what it cost Him.
Today, I have to go to class. And I don’t want to. I really don’t think I need another four hour class on first aid and CPR. But if I don’t take it, they won’t give me a license this year. They also are making every adult in the family get a drug test this year — at our own expense, and I’m not happy about that. Next week I have to take a six hour medication recertification — My most unfavorite of all.
But this is my job, and this is what I have to do so that I can keep on doing what I truly love most — making a safe place for Nettie and Cecelia, yes, but even more, with the help of those I love the most, making them part of a HOME.