When I was little, I never imagined you’d grow old. Ever. After all…you were my mom: fearless, beautiful, smart. Sparkling and smiling. Strong.
You made me feel safe. And loved. Even when you were mad at me. I’m trying so hard to make you feel that way now.
It’s frightening to step into your room, not knowing ‘who’ I’ll find. Will it be the woman whose eyes twinkle when she sees me standing there….or the one who is scared and confused and begging me to tell her where she is and how she got there? Will I find the woman who has forgotten that her own mother passed away over 30 years ago, and asks why my father hasn’t been there to see her lately or the one who inquires about how the doll-making is coming along?
You were always so patient with me. And I’m trying so hard to be patient with you….when you can’t walk very quickly, or when you call and tell me you’ve been “waiting by the door for hours” for me, when we really had no plans to go anywhere. You get mad…and tell me, “We did SO. You just forgot, young lady”. It breaks my heart.
I try so hard to put myself in your shoes. To know the fear in your heart when you can’t remember where your home is....or the belief that you are “stuck at work and everyone’s left” and you have no way home. I can’t imagine the terror. I see it in your eyes whenever I try to reassure you that you are not at work…that you’ve been retired for over 30 years and that you ARE home. Safe. And loved. I can tell you feel anything but.
And now…shingles. Oh, Mom…..I am SO sorry this is happening to you. I have to admit that I’m mad at God right now. REALLY mad. I know I shouldn’t be…..but I am. Why God…WHY?
And so….this Mother’s Day…I can’t even send this to you, because I don’t want you to read this and see how bad things really are, and that you are suffering from Alzheimer's Disease. Reading that would make the horror worse for you than it already is.
Just know that I love you with all my heart. And that I am here. Whenever you need me. Always. Just like you were for me.
Your Daughter Carol