Thursday, November 6, 2008

Pearlie's Treasures...

I took care of my Dad the last few years of his life. He lived alone until he was 95 years old in Senior Citizens Housing...a place called Sayre Christian Village. There were 98 apartments in Dad's building. During the years he lived there, I got to know many of the residents and loved talking to them each time I would visit Dad.

One of my favorites was Pearlie.

Pearlie loved to dress up with a pretty flowered dress

hat, gloves and purse.....just to walk the halls of the building.

Oh, and she loved rouge and lipstick.

It went well with her fluffy white hair and crystal sparkling blue eyes.

Pearlie always had a smile and kind word,

but she lived mostly in her own world, if you know what I mean.

Taking care of my dad could be a real challenge, he had dementia. At the same time I was juggling helping my husband run our small business, teaching high school Sunday School , President of a Garden Club and all the other things associated with living life.

One day in particular, Dad was especially difficult during my visit to help him change a Mohs surgery dressing. I finally got him happy and settled, but I was close to tears by the time I closed his apartment door and headed for home. Getting on the elevator I had ridden a hundred times before, walking down the long hall toward the front door... worn out and dragging.

Then it happened..... Pearlie yelled out as I past her door....

"Hey! she hollered from inside her room.

"Hey, come here!' she yelled.

At first I was worried something had happened to her and she needed help.

But when I turned to face her, I saw a big smile.

"Come on in" Pearlie offered. "Come on!" she urged.

"Look here!" grinning at me, as she fell to her knees

and started reaching for a box under her TV set.

Pearlie patted the carpet next to her to have me sit down with her.

She pulled out the large box and opened it revealing....... all her favorite things.

Be still my very precious!
She carefully and with great joy described every object in the large box.

A tea cup from her grandmother, hankies, pictures and
all sorts of pretty things and treasures she had collected over the years and saved...
all together to be cherished.
It didn't take long to realize Pearlie's box of treasures
had brought her much happiness over the years and was very, very precious to her,
I was honored to spend this time with her.
Pearlie and I laughed and talked about her years growing up and her favorite things.

Then out of the blue she turned to me and spoke perfectly nonsense.

"You make the Lord happy when you take such good care of your daddy" she said.

Pearlie went on to tell me lovingly, "it makes everyone happy

when you come and check on your dad, it makes us feel good."

Break my heart!

Pearlie you made sense for me!!

My heart soared that day.....

And I knew, God had used Pearlie to let me know He was there with me.

I was not alone.

Lamentations 3

22 "Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed,

for his compassion's never fail.

23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."


itcbeth said...

Maree, beautiful words. Such a wonderful reminder to us about God's faithfulness and our need to visit the elderly. My group of friends at church last night visited the neighborhood high rise building of mostly senior citizens. We took cookies and passed out sheet music for a good ol' fashioned gospel sing. We intended on blessing them with our presence but we walked away with the blessing. Those old saints sang those songs with such a joy. They knew it wouldn't be much longer until they were praising the Lord face to face!

Anonymous said...

Oh what a beautiful story. It's funny because I am thinking about volunteering at a nursing or senior citizens home. I have such a heart for the elderly. Maree, I so understand because my father has dementia and he has had it for 7 years and he is only 77. My mom takes care of him and on his bad days he is really bad. I wish I lived closer but I am 5.5 hours away. Thank you for this post today.


nanatrish said...

Such a sweet loving post! Didn't that make you feel so blessed that she had noticed your love for your daddy. She appreciated you and I know your daddy must have too. This was a precious story.