In the six years since J’s diagnosis, I have spent no time wondering why J got Alzheimer’s disease. It just is.
I do, however, find myself asking today, “Was it not for this very challenge that I am here at this place at this time?” (although, as you know, I am on vacation in China on a much needed break from caregiving….)
This is the Jewish question of the moment as we celebrate Purim, the holiday where the beautiful Esther becomes queen at a time when the king’s henchman wants to kill all the Jews. Esther comes up with many reasons not to intervene until her uncle says, “If you are silent and you do nothing at this time somebody else will save the Jewish people. But who knows, was it not for just this moment that you became a Queen, with access to King Achashverosh in the royal palace?” Queen Esther of course speaks up and saves the Jews.
For those of us living with spouses with Azheimer’s disease, may we remember that this is the challenge we are called to meet at this moment. May we be blessed with patience and strength.
Tip of the keyboard to Rabbi Sacks, whose weekly email got me thinking in this direction.