Monday, February 13, 2012

Grief, in two parts.

I find myself referring to my mother in the past tense.  My thoughts start out with "she was", or "she used to".  There are few descriptions that encompass her now.  She used to love mince pie, a good joke and letting a wave carry her into shore.  All that she was or did is now gone and the woman left behind is simple in her needs and carries few expectations.  She likes to hold my hand  and sometimes if the mood hits, she raises it softly to her lips and kisses my palm.  I grieve the mother I lost, but am unashamedly full of love for the one I have now.  We have very few shared memories between us.  There is no indication of recognition from one visit to the next.  Sometimes when I tell her I love her, she gives me a funny lopsided grin and I know she's thinking, "who is this woman who says she loves me?".  Always polite, ....she thanks me warmly and looks away.

My mother will soon turn 90...she likes ice cream, naps and a stuffed blue bear I got her for Christmas.  These things I know for sure.  I do not know the content of her dreams or if she ever remembers me.  She is affectionate and still capable of great love.  This I know to be true.  She used to sing in the car, but now she just makes noise.


  1. Pam-you are an awesome daughter....I miss hearing your funny stories about your mom..My grandmother had Alzheimers and three of my aunts on my dad side. So this is a little scary for me...
    Keep the faith and keep showing up like you do....Your awesome...Just needed to let you know...
    Kathy Seigars

  2. Hard to find the words, but if your mom can see the love and devotion you bring to her, she must glow.

  3. Hi Pamela,

    Your post is very touching. I find myself using the past tense sometimes, too. My mom still knows who I am but her memory is really fading. I started my blog a few months ago about my mom who has Alzheimer's. You may read my blog if you so wish. It's a little frightening when I started blogging and found there's so many people out there who are living with this horrible disease in one way or another, but also comforting to know that we have lots of support from understanding people who know what it is like. I cannot wait until a cure is found for all of these mind stealing diseases, and hopefully it will happen in our lifetime. Take care. ~Lizzie