How scary is that? to someone like me, very scary. But I am losing my words. My Mom is losing her’s too but in a different way. Her way is worse than mine, Her’s is coming from within her. Mine from outside of me. Her’s is opening her mouth and not knowing what she wants to say even though she knows what it is. She can’t remember how to say her words. It devastates her, scares her and makes her frantic. The more she searches the more she falters and the more she begs me to fix it. I can’t. I wish I could but I cannot. Her words are like candles, slowly the breeze is blowing them out and with each loss of flame her world is darker. My words are leaving with the loss of a silent support system. A wall I leaned on and offered in return. A friend facing the same fears and trials I face. I use my words to show the people around me that I care. I use them to offer support, I use them to help. When the flame of my words is willingly blown out I mourn but move along with life. I wish I could do the same for Mom. I can’t.
People ask me every day how Mom is and I reply that today is a <good, bad, worse> day. For her every day is a nightmare she avoids by sleeping. People say I’m lucky to have these extra years with her. I reply that I am and I know I am lying. Her dementia is her life sentence and I am her prison warden. I control her keepers, her cell, and her everything. I feed her, I soothe her, I make the best world for her out of the hell she’s in. She leans on me. I lean on very few.
And now I mourn the loss of one of those few. I’m sad today, I’ve lost a person who understands exactly what I face every day. Who also balances the past with the parent they have now. Who has to forgive, forget, and tell someone that it will be okay, that we will fix them and make it better. Even when we can’t.
If you read this, you few who do, and you’re thinking I’ve lost it. I haven’t. I’m just writing the words in my head because I have to get them out. I have become merely a daughter. My social circle is over age 80 and I find I love them all… Martha who calls me “dearie” and talks about nothing. Jean who misses her dog and always greets me with “how’s your dog?”. Arabelle who walks her wheelchair in circles all day long, going down each hall and then going down it again. Raymond who talks wrestling with me and wishes he could be back in his beloved PA. Doris, Joan, Jean who thinks she’s my mother-in-law, Marie, all of them. I think they’ve taught me to feel emotions better, to care, to feel compassion, and to be sad when someone is just gone. Even when the person who is just gone without a reason or a word, is a person outside that world.
I promised a follower on here that I will use this space to share my feelings and my path with Mom. That I will share her world so they can understand. It may not always make sense but I will keep this promise. It won’t be pretty because life is not pretty and my stories aren’t so happy right now.