Wednesday, August 25

just a....

...little note.

I am thinking that sometimes this blog will
serve as a place to simply record small moments
with my mom that I will not want to forget.

Like tonight, watching a sweet movie together
and noticing that she was sitting with her arms
wrapped around her bent leg, the foot resting
in the chair...a very familiar pose for her that
I haven't seen for a long, long time.

And after we kissed at her bedtime, she said
"Good night m' dear"....also something very
familiar, but long-missed.

Glimpses of her old self.

Monday, August 23

good days

I write this as I wait for my bath to fill, having just enjoyed
a nice supper on the porch. My mom is in the kitchen with my
husband, doing the dishes (a favorite chore). We have had
good days for four days running...Mom hasn't been waking
up at night and she has been happy. I have tried to figure out
what we are doing to possibly contribute to the sudden sleeping
well...but every evening has been different-wine one night
and not the next, a movie at homeone night and a social outing
(with caffeine!) another, sometimes a walk during the day,
sometimes not. As a caregiver, you can start to feel as
superstitious as a baseball player in trying to figure
out how to have these sorts of welcome outcomes on a
more regular basis...but when there is no answer, I just
let go and appreciate the gift of them.

a few hours later...

Wouldn't you know, after coming down from
my bath, saying good-night to Mom and while
watching a movie with my deario, Mom has woken up
twice. The first time she came out into the living room
with her lipstick on so nicely and her shoes and shirt
on over her pajamas...she was sure there was something
she was supposed to be doing and somewhere she needed
to go. I helped her out of her clothes and shoes and loved
her up and sympathized with what she was feeling after
awaking from a dream. Lights out and awhile later during
the movie I noticed her light was on again. This time, I
went to check on her and she was trying to find
"whatever was making that noise" in her room.
This is all pretty typical, and I suppose our
little interlude of peaceful sleep is over...
atleast for tonight. was a good day.

Friday, August 20

life on earth

A whole month has passed since I wrote here
(thank you deeply for all the warm messages sent
my way in response to my last post), a whole month
of mostly depressed spirits and emotion bubbling up
over and over again....but the sun is shining again in
my heart and I am just very simply
grateful for it.

I have been afraid to write expose my
raw feelings, the depth of my struggles as a caregiver,
the little and big things that fill my mind and my heart...
but I think that has passed. Yes, there are people facing
much harder realities than mine and there are people facing
my reality and handling it in a more peaceful way than I. But
I need to write this journey and I need to be honest about
it, so that is what I will do here. Perhaps this is one of the
good things that will come out of the emptiness left as
friends have disappeared and illusions of many kinds
have been must get it out somehow.

I may write everyday....sometimes I imagine finding
a blog online written by another woman caring for her
mother with dementia and trying to do so positively
and beautifully and authentically...and how comforting
and connecting it would be to follow the ins and outs
and ups and downs of her daily life. I have searched
and searched for such a blog....having yet to find it, I
will just have to make what I am looking for...knowing
it will do me good and hoping it will do something
beyond that.

But now, it is almost time to leave the library and
pick up my mom from her afternoon at respite car....
as good a reason as any not to edit this rather unexpected
post. I thought I would be catching up aboutwhat I have been
reading and the latest chapter in the Great Toothbrushing
Debate-and so I shall. But my heart was in charge of
my fingers today (perhaps it always should be?) and
this outpouring feels like another of the healing
rain-showers our parched part of the earth has
been given lately....and that reminds me of a poem
I shared at The Bower last year...

And between shower and shine hath birth

The rainbow's evanescent glory;

Heaven's light that breaks on mists of earth!

Frail symbol of our human story,

It flowers through showers where, looming hoary,

The rain-clouds flash with April mirth,

Like Life on earth.

Mathilde Blind

..."like Life on earth"....that is what I am living, what
we are all living and what I want to put down here
in the days to come.