Faith vs Fear

Faith vs Fear

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Worried, but Not Panicked

This fall and winter has been harder on David than usual as he's struggled with more depression. I'm sure my issues about my dad didn't help, but he was great about giving me moral support to work through it.
David went to his regular dr. appt. and had blood tests to check lithium levels. Unfortunately his sodium levels are way too high and the lithium is low, so the dr. took him off lithium completely. He came through the withdrawal from it ok, but he's not doing very well with the depression. He says, "my body is ok, but my mind isn't."
His dr. is obviously worried and called him again yesterday to have his blood levels checked today with another dr. appt. coming soon. I haven't talked to the dr. recently, but I'm going to go to the next appt. After David stabilized, I felt that it was important that he be in control of his disorder as much as possible so I don't go to the dr. with him very often. He's good about telling me what was said, and I know I can call the dr., but with this latest wrinkle I need to talk to him about what's going on and what to expect now.
He hasn't had the wild mood swings from mania to depression that I was worried about when he stopped taking lithium, but his depression isn't lifting either. He said the Dr. told him that it was part of having the elevated sodium levels that can damage the kidneys and affect his mood. 
Have I mentioned lately how much I hate this disorder? 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Season of Sorrow, Season of Hope

“He loved the warm sun of summer and the high mountain meadows, the trails through the timber and the sudden clear blue of the lakes. He loved the hills in the winter when the snow comes,” Hemingway said. “Best of all he loved the fall … the fall with the tawny and grey, the leaves yellow on the cottonwoods, leaves floating on the trout streams and above the hills the high blue windless skies. He loved to shoot, he loved to ride and he loved to fish.” Ernest Hemingway

Shortly after I wrote last, my 89-year-old dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer and after a short battle with it, passed away in September. We were all able to gather around him for one last visit over Labor Day weekend, then a few weeks later he was gone.

The funeral, held on a beautiful fall day, was a fitting tribute to this kind, funny man.

Granddaughter watching the grave being dug.

At the cemetery. The coffin was built by my brother.

In a nod to the Native Americans living near the area, we each took a handful of dirt, turned once in each direction, and as we passed the coffin, placed the dirt on top of it. 

Filling in the grave

 Normally I love the fall, but this season has been difficult for me as I've worked through all the emotions that come with burying a parent. David has been supportive and understanding, and I have found great comfort and solace working with our ward's children. This time has been bittersweet, but there have also been the blessings of drawing close together as a family and renewed faith that sustains and comforts during the hard times. I am grateful for both faith and family, and especially for the mother and father who loved us and taught us so much.