Altar Call – Opelika-Auburn News

Walter Albritton

March 5, 2017


Staying alive with a man in isolation


       March 1st was D-Day for me – Deliverance from 14 days of isolation! First order of the day was a haircut; my last one was in December and I looked like a shaggy dog. Brandy’s quick scissors helped me look decent again.

       My wife Dean patiently cared for me for the two weeks I stayed in our back bedroom, never touching me and washing her hands 499 times to avoid learning what the C-Diff devil can do to the human body. She prepared three meals a day and pushed me to eat a ton of Yogurt as a morning and afternoon snack.

       God blessed Dean with a marvelous sense of humor so I asked her to share the caregiver’s side of our isolation story. I think you will enjoy her thoughts:

“Clorox is everywhere!  It is on my hands, on the counter, in the sink and above all, on the dishes.  I don’t like Clorox but I understand it kills germs.  So for two weeks I worked hard to kill those unseen demons. 

“The tray must be clean before my meals are put on it.  Then when the tray is prepared with whatever I could find to make a meal, napkins, fork, spoon and drink are carefully placed, I make the journey to the back of the house.

“Step by step I go with tray in hand until the two steps down loom before me in our split-level home. I ease down, praying as I go, “Lord, don’t let me fall.” There at last I am on level flooring and now 15 steps to go before I reach the room where the bearded one is sitting in his chair. 

“What a sight!  Is this the man I married 65 years ago?  Wow!  Oh well, he must be fed.  I put the tray down, remind him to take his medicine, drink the water – and please eat the Yogurt.  I don’t touch him or breathe and I back out.  ‘Call if you need me’ I say as I make my way back the 15 steps to safety.

“This is where the fun begins!  I walk like the Bee Gees when they sang ‘Staying Alive’ and when I come to the two steps up, I give the Rocky Balboa arms raised in victory sign. One more meal served! 

“I fix my plate and sit down with E. Stanley Jones’ book, The Christ of the Mount. One day I turned to the page where E. Stanley wrote, ‘The Christian is to be salt not merely to save life from moral putrefaction.  He is to save life from losing its taste and becoming insipid. The gospel is the greatest adventure in faith in life and its worth-whileness that the world has ever seen.  I came that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly is its central and nerve-giving note.  It is this sense of victorious vitality that puts nerve and courage into life which otherwise grows gray on our hands.  In the East and West men are suffering from failure of nerve.  On the whole the East is suffering from a vast failure of nerve, of world-weariness, of personality-weariness and of life-weariness.’  There you go again E. Stanley, setting my heart on fire! 

“Okay, old girl, get yourself up and put joy back in your life.  We are almost through this time of isolation.  Walter will shave again!  We will see our friends again!  Thank you, Lord, for showing me one more time that you are my source of strength and joy. 

“It is good to be alive. With the Lord’s help I will be ‘staying alive’ as long as I live.  Thank you Bee Gees for giving me the right song to sing during this time of testing!” + + +