Monday, June 29, 2009

~Balancing Act, Part I~
















Anyone who has their own business knows how difficult it is to balance work and home life. Add that to having your office/studio at home....and the balancing act becomes even more challenging. The 'drive' and discipline needed for the business to become successful is daunting. THEN add in an 89-year-old mother with alzheimer's and you have a balancing act that just simply doesn't 'balance' at all. In fact....it falls with loud thuds on a daily basis, although I continously struggle to keep everything in its place. It has me in tears and/or laughter most everyday. It's the only way I can keep any sort of sanity.

Mom's declining in the WORST possible way: she's rapidly losing her mind. There. I've said it. It's horrific to watch. I cannot imagine the terror of what it must be to like living in her body right now, and no matter how I try to understand what it is like there in her brain....looking out on a world that no longer makes any sense to her....I cannot imagine it.

She started a whole new phase in June: leaving. Yes...complete with her 'necessities' of life all tied up in a pillow case....neatly tied at the top with a sock. I can imagine that to her, this was her only way 'out' of the hell she is in. And so....the staff found her several yards from the assisted living facility, almost to the woods at the edge of the property having fallen on her knees. This poor, frail, pain-ridden woman who can hardly walk. Escaped. Frightening. When asked where she was going, her only reply was, "I don't know".

And so, the assisted living facility required that we provide paid, evening 'sitters'....to keep her safe. Yup....my job to make sure the hours were covered. And when there was no one to 'hire'.....it is me and/or my husband. Another 'job' to add to the already way-too-long list. Another emotionally draining task. Another step with mom as her disease worsens.

This week we will move her to a room in the alzheimer's area of the facility. A 'locked' area for people, like mom, that are 'flight risks'. Relieving....but sad and scary for mom, who I am sure will become panicked and angry at yet another part of her life she will be unable to understand. Another 'terror' for her to endure. Although we will set up her room (an exact replica, space-wise) as her present one, can you imagine the nightmare of wheeling yourself out of your room, as you've always known it, into a totally 'different' hallway? It brings me to tears whenever I think about it.

I thank God every day that we found Mom such a wonderful facility as this one. We tried caring for her here for a long time. It was a nightmare-beyond-belief. And so, for now, this is the only way to try to balance this part of my life.

Part II, Wednesday.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Carol,
My heart goes out to you and to your Mom. Please focus on the fact that she is in a wonderful facility that can keep her safe, even from herself. You're doing an awesome job of balancing and juggling and doing whatever is necessary to keep things going.
Hang in there, darling!
Love,
Kathi

Molly Alexander said...

Carol,

I am so sorry that this is happening to your mom & your family. I know that you must feel absolutely helpless, but be assured that you have many people praying for you.

- Molly

Sandi McBride said...

Carol, my heart goes out to you and to your Mother...beloved Mothers who we see as out of their minds, locked in a prison of their own bodies making...how do we make it better? We hold their hands and hope they know who we are, and barring that, hope that in the land their mind is now visiting it is like Disneyland and that they know everyone else who is inhabiting their dream...I pray that's so...I believe it may be...
warm hugs
Sandi

Darlene said...

Oh Carol I am so sorry. I know how hard it is for you to watch your mother as it was for me to watch my grandmother with that horrible disease. I am keeping you both in my prayers during this agonizing time. It sounds like you have your Mom in a wonderful facility.♥

Lynne (lynnesgiftsfromtheheart) said...

Carol, this brought me to tears. We lived this with my beloved mother in law for a couple of years and then she decided to go to a rest home. For the present, hubby is home, and like you I watch a part of him disappearing each day. Going with in himself.. I often wonder where he's going. A safer more secure place? Watching your mate of almost 31 years slowly disappear before your eyes is the hardest thing a person goes thru. I've always said this disease is the longest hardest good bye a person makes.. So, on the good days we cherish them and deal as best we can on the not so good days.. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and yours darling...( thanks so much for swinging in) many hugs ~lynne~

Fat, frumpy and fifty... said...

sounds like a wonderful place...an awful time for any daughter...it happens to so many of us....and you have no control.....I really feel for you.
Thanks for dropping by...mine.

Mel said...

No words my friend...just love...and hugs...you know where I'm at if you need me.

xoxoxoxoxoxo

Darlene said...

Oh and I came back over to tell you no I wasn't up at 4:00 a.m. When you see a post from me at that time (which is the time I usually post) it is from an automatic set up to post. I am usually up at around 5:00 because my older poodle wakes me up to go outside. A lot of times I go back to sleep though....at least for an hour or two.♥

Nel said...

((((( Carol & Jim )))))))

Melissa Stover said...

that is so sad about your mom. i can't even imagine trying to balance my life with issues like that. thank you for stopping by my blog.