Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Memory loss

Mom finally said it out loud tonight. "I am having trouble with my memory". I was helping her get ready for bed when she finally told me about her memory problems. I have known for awhile that she was experiencing some difficulties. She has asked what our baby's name is every day for over a week.

I took her hand and asked her to sit down on her bed. Once she was seated I asked her what she was having trouble remembering. She gazed off into space and said nothing. I said, "You must have forgotten what you have forgotten". That made her smile and laugh a bit. It is true...she has forgotten what she has forgotten.

So..I feel we have reached another bend in the road. For Mom to acknowledge her memory problems out loud is a milestone of sorts. I felt sad on the way is hard for her to know that her memory is failing her...and it is hard for me to see her slipping away bit by bit.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Update on Mom

Mom is beginning to visibly fail. Her memory is a little sketchy, her gait is more unsteady and she complains constantly about being lonely. The worst part is the crying she does every time I prepare to leave. It is heartbreaking to leave her there, but I have to get on with the rest of my life. Mom would consume my entire life if I let her. She is used to 24 hour a day care from my father, but that ended over 3 years ago.

Now that I am working, she is having a tough time adapting to my new schedule. I didn't call her in time the other night and by the time I did get to her, she was pretty upset, anxious and hysterical. She was worried sick that something had happened to me. I know on some level she knows her life is dependent on me, but she refuses to consider any other living arrangement that would be easier on both of us. I have basically given up trying to convince her to move into a retirement home. She always says she doesn't have enough money. She is still controlling her banking information, so I have very little idea of what her financial situation really is these days.

I do have a lot of empathy for Mom, despite her stubborn resistance to change and her quirky ways of handling her affairs. I would love to figure out a way to help her make a happier life for her remaining time on earth. I have had to give up the idea that I can make that happen for her.