By Lisa Hirsch
A DAY FILLED WITH SUNSHINE
Today was a really good day for my mom as were the last several days. My heart seems to go up and down with lightness and heaviness depending how my mom is doing each day. I know this has to be a normal response and I do not question it. I just know that this is how it is ever since my Ruthie became ill with Alzheimer's.
Fortunately for us my mom still has enough good moments for me to have a smile on my face and to delight in our daily phone calls. Just today I said to my mom after we sang several somgs that neither of us remembered the words to, "Mom, are you my sweetheart", and my Ruthie answered with, "no how could we be, we're both girls. If you were not a girl then I could call you sweetheart". We both laughed and at that moment, I think even mom understood how silly our converstion was. It really does not matter I just love hearing the sound of my mom's laughter .
The next part of what I'm about to share was at a moment that my heart felt quite heavy. It goes like this:
As I sat in the waiting room for a tour of another nursing home for my mom, I was left in deep thought and feeling rather sad. I have seen the dementia floors in several nursing homes only to keep feeling that my mom was not ready for this. Although my mom's illness will progress I know that she has some life left in her. Bringing her to one of these places will probably really upset her and the thought of it seems to sicken me.
My husband has been touring these facilities with me and we are sadly starting to speak about our own mortality and what might lie ahead for us. I'm sure that if my mom could reason, and truly understand what her illness will be doing to her, as it progresses ,she'd probably wish deep in her heart to be able to say goodbye now.
My mom on most days seems happy, yet she has no idea what day or year it is. She knows not where she lives nor can she remember most of her life. I've often described her mind like a blank canvas. It is amazing that Alzheimer's can just remove ones life as if it never existed. My mom has no idea what is happening in the world (which may not be such a bad thing). And although my mom does not remember that I just called or visited her, I know that she can still feel all the love I have for her.
Life can be great and life can be wonderful. Life can also be cruel and hard. None of us know what lies ahead , so we must truly be happy and thankful for each new day that we have. These days are truly a gift. I know that my mom only wishes for me a day filled with sunshine.