A husband takes care of his wife as she slips away
This couple has been married for over 50 years and they still adore each other. But their relationship has undergone an extraordinary change.
They met when they were still teenagers, she was 16, he was 19. They both came from conventional families — he was a farmer — and they starting dating. They fell in love and eventually he proposed to her. She said yes. They looked forward to the future, and the future came. “We were simple people,” he recalls.
They spent peaceful, happy decades together until their 50th anniversary rolled around. They got in the car and drove from their home in Michigan down to Missouri, where they were both from, to celebrate the occasion.
“On the drive home, she kept telling me that we were going the wrong way. She was very insistent. I didn’t fight her. I kept letting her turn around because I knew that eventually we’d hit the main road back to Michigan. I knew then. Her father had dementia. And so did his father. So I knew what was happening.”
He had to watch her mind disappearing and take on more and more care-taking responsibility. She'd try to leave the house randomly so he would lie in front of the door to stop her. She managed to escape the house once at night and wander off. He finally found her way out on the road and persuaded her with difficulty to return home.
He treasures the little things now: how she still slips her hand under his shirt to feel his skin, how she looks up and kisses him, how she talks to him, even when the words don’t make any sense.
“But I don’t see this as a curse. It’s an honor. This is what the Lord has given me to do. She has served this family her entire life. And now it’s my turn to serve her.”
It’s a beautiful sentiment filled with respect and honor for the woman he spent his life with. Who isn’t touched by the choice he’s made and his loving attitude? It can’t be easy, but sometimes the best things in life have a high price: we’ll all lose the ones we love, what matters is whether we appreciate every moment for what it is, while we have them.