She is waking up from her nap and looking for lunch. Hobbling around on crutches with another Urinary Tract Infection. I forgot my phone at home so drove up the hill here to fetch it.
"Take your time," she said. "I'm fine."
So I am taking my time in my little house here in the California badlands. I will go down the mountain soon to her little home on the hillside. We both live in double wide trailers. It is very cozy.
I cleared the pathway for her to walk on crutches in her house. It is a minefield there but she doesnt want to change a thing. She and I laugh about another lady I took care of. That lady refused to go to a hospital.
"But Gladys," I said, "You can't walk to the bathroom."
"Then I'll crawl."
I am laughing even now thinking about helping Gladys die at 99 years old. She was a Leo like my mom. Tough as a nail, sourdough from Alaska. She lived by herself in a little house on Alki Point in Seattle. An old friend who I was happy to hang out with the last three years of her life. I learned so much from Gladys. I learned that a turkey baster is a good way to squeegie someone's throat out who is having a hard time breathing.
Now, my mother, a Leo and 94 years old is in danger of crawling around her house. She could do it. I know if she fell on one of the little throw rugs she HAS to have down on her floor that she would crawl inch by inch to a safe place and pull herself up. It is past time to buy a wearable alarm for her.
I also know she has the bravery to die. She helped my Dad die in that room. She had taken him to the hospital many many times and finally she just put him to bed in there and he died. She remembers him shaking at the end.
I want to die sitting up looking at a pretty landscape and then just passing off into the air. In Alaska there is a small island where a man is suposedly buried sitting up and looking out at the water.
I know Tibetian Monks have been known to die sitting up. Meditating themselves out of existence. Done. Knowing that everything evolves and comes around again in spirals. You will meet again and so you better do right by each other now.
I am very lucky to be close to her and we are working well together to figure out all the twists and turns. I think she does better on her own. She can focus and she is fiercely competent. That is the reason she has been able to drive even at 94. She concentrates. When I am there it is a little distracting.
I'm going down to help mom again. Breaks are important but there is where I should be.