Tuesday, February 5, 2013

February 5, 2013

I visited Mom at the home on Sunday.  She was at the dining table.  The aide said she'd bring her into the living room.  It's just down the hall but Mom started yelling "Joanne, wait for me."  Poor Mom is so confused.

We sat in the living room for a while.  Mom got restless and rolled herself back into the dining room.  I waited for her to come back - maybe 10 minutes or so.  Looking back I know that I should have just left and gone home then.

But, I went into the dining room and she had started eating dinner.  I told her that she'd left me.  She said that she would be right back.  I sat with her while she nibbled at her dinner.  She is in her own little universe.  So, are the other patients.  Most of them don't even make eye contact with me or each other.  Mom doesn't know anyone's name.  I've tried teaching her the aides' names but she forgets them immediately.

Mom and I went back into the living room.  It was getting late and I still needed to run some errands.  I told Mom that I was leaving.  She said no, no, don't leave me.  I stayed longer.  I took her to look out the window.  That made her angry.  I don't know what she wanted to do.  The television is always on but the patients don't seem to really watch it.  They just sit and stare.

Finally, I kissed Mom goodbye and said I had to go.  She started yelling "no, no, don't go."  She got louder as I got to the door.  I could hear her when I got into my car.  I felt bad leaving her but I had to go sometime.

I think it would be better to just go without telling her.  It seems rude but I think it will be less stressful for her.  She probably forgets that I'm even there when she leaves the room.

I understand why there are never many visitors at the home.  It is so sad watching your loved one decline.  Mom has been there a year and she is the healthiest one in the home now.  I've seen other patients return after strokes, heart attacks.  The ones with Parkinson are getting worse.

I'll keep visiting Mom.  I won't just abandon her.  With each visit I have to acknowledge the reality of aging.  It sucks!  It is like looking into the future and seeing your own mortality.  Time is going quicker every day.  All I can do is try to live in the moment and make every day count.

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