Exchanging Shoes


From Dad's Point of View

IMAGINE your feet encased in concrete. So heavy you can barely shuffle along. Not only that but having to stop and catch your breath every 10 - 15 steps. You tell yourself to just stop, rest for a moment and continue on. For almost all your life you have been active. You have done so many things. You have always kept learning. Your major passion being hunting, fishing, and photography but at this point even those are often too strenuous. Now it is difficult to do the normal things in everyday life. Your hands, your body does not, cannot do what your brain wants it to do. Your body is shutting down, it is old, stiff, arthritic, but is that not what bodies do at 90 years old?

WORRY has been a part of your life. You have always worried about your wife, your kids, and your family. Now, that worry is consuming your thoughts as you wonder what will happen to your wife because you know she will live longer than you. There is no doubt in your mind. You and your wife have saved for retirement all during your 63 years of marriage.

It was not easy when you have also raised 7 children. There was always a bill that needed to be paid, clothes, shoes, and groceries that needed to be purchased. You figured out just what you would need for retirement. Just what your wife would need to be comfortable... when you were gone. You know someday you will not wake up and you don't want your beautiful wife left alone or worse taken advantage of like many vulnerable adults and elders today.

PATIENCE has been used to teach your seven children many things as they have grown into adults. Some have been more difficult than others to raise. That's nothing unique. A family of nine has many opinions. In your old age now, you are hoping they have turned out to be honest, have compassion and humility. You pray they all understand what it is to have common sense, how to listen with respect many different points of view, making sure their opinions are based on facts, and to understand and be compassionate toward all those they come in contact with. You have found with all your children's different personalities, opinions, and outside influences, no one is perfect. No one.

TRUSTING some of your children more than others is hard to do because now you are finding out not all is what it seems to be. You thought you at least raised honest children. You thought you raised them to respect their elders. You thought they would respect your and your wife's wishes.

TRAPPED in a situation where you are almost like a hostage because of your age and health, you are frustrated and angry with yourself. How did you let yourself and your wife get in a situation like this? Where you feel trapped and keeping the peace means to try and out maneuver those who are trying to take advantage of you. You are too old for these tactics but you must press on, continue until you know your wife is safe. You must stay alive long enough to see your wife is safe and in the care of those who will follow your and her wishes.

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