It Started with A Phone Call


You never know what changes a phone call will bring or how it will impact your life. A year and a half ago we were surprised by a call.

“Can you come and get the kids?”

Although we had been asked many times in the past if we could come and take the kids for a night or weekend, this call was different. We were informed our daughter had tried to end her life.

She was in the hospital when we arrived at her home. Her two scared and hungry children waited for deliverance. Our two-year-old grandson was lying on the couch, crying, arms reaching up to me. It was almost 8:00 in the evening and he and his seven-year-old sister hadn’t yet been fed.  He gobbled up two servings of instant oatmeal as quickly as I could feed him.  My granddaughter had eaten a granola bar she foraged from the cupboard and was looking forward to “going out to eat.”

We gathered their things like the house was on fire. I grabbed clothes, medicines, school backpack, a stuffed monkey and a doll. The children had been at our house almost as much as their own so we had enough stuff to get us through the next few days.

Within that time it was apparent the children needed to stay with us for a while. At least until their home life had significant changes. Our daughter needed tough-love parenting as we loving advocated for our grandchildren. I bought a crib, sippy cups, and lots of diapers and wipes.

We cried and prayed and I began to journal. These outlets have been my way of coping. I will end with a journal entry and a question: What do you do to help you cope with difficulties when parenting your child and/or grandkids?

I Want My Mommy

“Mommy, mommynote pad and pen. I want my mommy.”

Their cries pierce my heart.

We cuddle.

Our tears mingle and bathe our faces.

Two little ones whose lives have been decimated by the paths chosen by their parents.

No excuses or explanations will comfort them.

I can only offer the sanctuary of my home,

My arms,

My heart.

Father God,

Is Your heart crushed when I foolishly choose to ignore Your laws?

When I cast aside Your plan for my life?

When I seek my own way, not Your will?

As I raise these little ones, please help me remember to seek after You.

To follow You closely.

To draw my strength from You.

Supply me hourly with patience and energy.

Help me model Your love and grace.

The task is too important and too great to do on my own.


8 thoughts on “It Started with A Phone Call

  1. Vi

    I hope you know you are in the prayers of so many. Sharing your experience will offer a gift to those who are trying to parent their grandchildren. May you continue to know God’s blessings in each day as you nurture those two little ones.


  2. Lynne Masland

    As a foster parent and a grandparent the “I want mommy or daddt” and the “why?” Are the most heartwrenching part of what we do. First, I never lie or make up answers. I tell them if I don’t know an answer. Adults sometimes just don’t know and that is ok. I tell the kids that moms and dads sometimes need help and you are helping for a while. God bless you for what you are doing for your grandchildren and their mother.


  3. Cathy Morley

    I am so sorry for the pain you all have endured while on this difficult journey.How do I cope with difficulties?…being real with God and with others. Putting on a happy face when I’m hurting doesn’t help.Allowing myself to be vulnerable and share my pain is extremely difficult for me, but helps tremendously.You are very brave to share your journey with others.


  4. Kelly

    Thanks for sharing your story, Judy. I don’t have the answers, but I do know your grandkids are blessed to have a grandmother who is willing to put love into action for them. I’ll be praying for healing for all of you and especially for wisdom, stamina, and patience for you.


  5. Oh, Judy. This brings back memories for me. We had our grandchildren for almost six months. In that time, one thing that helped our seven year old granddaughter was to make up stories. Her mother was at a rehab facility. She didn’t understand where she was or why she was gone, so we wrote stories about a little girl who went to live with her grandma. Thus my ECLAIR book series were born and are still going strong. There’s comfort in knowing we’re not alone. We do what we can because we care. I look back now and realize those were precious moments in our lives. The girls no longer live with us and things are going well with their parents, but we were blessed during that time. We will never forget our time with them.


  6. Judy, I have thought of you and prayed for you often since Montrose. You are doing such a special ministr for your little ones. A tough task and one many grandparents refuse. May God grant you wisdom, courage, love, and strength every day. And may He continue to bless you richly as you bless these children with the stability and love they so desperately need, not to mention as you bless all of us whom you touch with your writing.

    Hugs and prayers …


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