Serendopeity

The faculty of making stupid discoveries by accident. The name of my first Fantasy Football Team. Neither of which have anything to do with this blog. I just like the word. Deal with it !!!!!!

I “miss” my mom.

It is 11:18 am and mom is still in bed sleeping.  Dad is sitting downstairs, totally bored.  I asked him if he wanted to read the paper – so he is, at least, browsing it.  I feel bad that there isn’t lot for him to do.  His only real hobbies were hunting and fishing and he can’t do either of those anymore either.  I understand the boredom issue – I myself have moments when I wish there was “something to do”.  But there always is something to do around here so my moments are more of  laziness rather than boredom.

Mom would sleep 24/7 if we let her.  This is another phase of her disease.  I have been warned that there could also be the opposite where she does not sleep and will have to be watched 24/7. I am dreading that phase more than her sleeping phase.  At least while she is sleeping I can get things done without having to stop and ask her not to touch things please.  I hate asking her that as much as she hates hearing it.  It makes my job that more difficult when I have to do something twice.  For instance, the dishes.  I hate doing dishes.  When I first moved in here I had a dishwasher.  It bit the dust in May and as of yet Landlord Man has not replaced it as required in the Residential Tenancies Act nor as he promised he would do in June. 

After each meal I collect all the dishes and set them in the kitchen.  Sometimes I am finished my meal long before mom and dad.  I eat much less, therefore faster than them.  At dinner time I prefer to have my coffee and sometimes dessert later in the evening while watching TV.

Mom has this ingrained trait that dishes must be done as soon as a meal is over.  I do not share this trait with mom.  Instead, I do the dishes when I get to them, sometime between laundry, showering, sleeping and other general life occurances.   Mom also thinks that by wiping dishes down with a wet paper towel is washing them.  This is also a trait I do not share with my mother.  When I do the dishes I use the hottest water possible and wear rubber gloves.  I do this for two reasons.  It is more sanitary and when they are that hot coming out of the water they dry alot faster.  I told you, I hate doing dishes. 

There are times when inadvertantly mom is left to her own devices in the kitchen.  Usually, after dinner we watch TV.  And usually I fall asleep in the big easy chair…this leaves mom free and clear to enter the kitchen and wreck some havoc.  No one ever knows what they will find if she has been in there alone.   Once,  a container of Bungee Cords made its way into the fridge. Just yesterday I opened the fridge door to find a pile of clean dish towels on the shelf.  Ok, so it was neatly folded and stacked but that is not the point!

I never realized how picky I was about my kitchen until mom and dad came to live with me.  I am by no means a control freak, but I am a Virgo.  There is a place for everything in my kitchen, at least there is a place in my mind for everything in my kitchen.  Knives are separated by usage in the cutlery drawer.  As are spoons and forks.  In mom’s world they all go together.  Pots,  pans, baking sheets etc are under the counter in the cupboard.  Dish towels, dish clothes, rubber gloves go in the drawer in the microwave stand.  The list goes on.  In mom’s world something goes wherever she can find a place for it.  I have now come to understand what I once thought was an OCD trait in my father of buying something – kitchen things in particular was not in fact OCD but rather the fact that mom had put something away and didn’t know where so dad just went and bought new.  At one time they had 4 coffee machines.  Somewhere in their place are more dish towels than at WalMart.

I love my mother.  I always have.  Even in those wacky teen years when some children hate their parents…not really hate them, just think they do…I never did.  My mom and I got along great.  Sure we had our differences, what parents and children do not, but never anything that would have us running to a shrink for help.  My mom was a cool mom.  One that all my friends would come and visit even if I wasn’t home.  We had one of those homes where all the kids hung out.  Myself and my brothers friends even called my parents mom and dad. (Moreso my mother than my father…) To this day some of my friends still call them mom and dad.  Unfortunately mom and dad don’t remember most of them. 😦

Alzheimers has robbed my mother of most of her “motherly” traits.  Mom was always a shoulder to cry on, a calmer of all fears, a tender hand to wipe away tears.  I could talk to her about almost anything and she would understand and tell me what she would do.  She could see the good in almost any situation.  She was kind and compassionate.  That is all gone.

When I was first diagnosed with cancer in 2004 all she could come up with was that it wasn’t “fair”.  She didn’t understand the ramifications of the diagnosis, the severity of it all was lost on her.  On a daily basis she would ask what was wrong with me and what the doctors were going to do to fix it.  Explaining the surgery, what it entailed and the subsequent chemo and radiation elicted nothing more than a perfunctatory “that doesn’t sound good”.  One time and one time only, in a moment of lucidity she wrapped her arms around me and let me cry on her shoulder.  The moment was brief and ended when she decided she was hungry and wanted some toast.

I miss my mom.  Even though she is here physically she is all but lost to me.  She is not the same woman I called Mom my whole life.  I want her back.  I want her to wrap her arms around me while I sob and tell me it is all going to be alright.  But, that is not going to happen.  Instead I will go through my day wishing for some small miracle that includes just once her remembering that I am her daughter, her first born and not just the woman who lives upstairs.

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7 responses to “I “miss” my mom.

  1. steve33433 February 3, 2009 at 7:53 pm

    You know, I do appreciate your hanging in with me with since my diagnosis led me to start my Blog. Now, after finding your blog and just reading the piece about your parents, my opening line in this comment makes me feel like the master of understatement. You deal with NED, your parents, your brother, your dead dishwasher and myriad other life issues and there you are writing to me about me, about you and about what we share. You are unbelievable as you juggle the aspects of life and make time for each.
    “I Miss My Mom” was very heavy duty but did cause me to see you much more clearly in light of the family things going on in your life. Now I need to go back and read your entire Blog and place myslef within the perspective that fits.
    You are definitely a very special person.
    You need to spend time on me like you need another dead dishwasher – but I am glad you did.
    Steve33433

  2. serendopeity February 3, 2009 at 11:41 pm

    Thank you.

  3. Latane February 4, 2009 at 8:07 am

    Oh how I could relate to your post. I miss my husband, his funny jokes, his constant whistling, his upbeat attitude and of course, those hugs. But, unfortunately, both your mom and my husband are living in the land of Alzheimers. I just pray that they soon find a cure so that some other daughter/wife won’t have to go through this. We have to hang in there.

  4. serendopeity February 4, 2009 at 10:48 am

    I know Latane. It is just so difficult somedays. But hanging in there is what we do, isn’t it? I wouldn’t give up the last year with mom and dad for anything. It has taught me so many things. Admittedly a hard way to learn, but in the grand scheme of things lessons all the same.
    Some days I want to give up! But I know that feeling will subside by the time I get up the next morning of any given day. It is the evenings that I find the most difficult. We are all tired – the littlest things seem to make me want to run for cover.
    I went to a seminar put on by the Alzheimer’s Society. Our new thing around here is that if no one is being hurt by a particular behaviour we go with it. So what if mom wants to wear dad’s clothes LOL. And so what if she wants to eat her food all together in one pile on her plate. These are things that make her feel better and since going with the flow, I have managed to lessen the stress in my life a teeny bit.
    I hope your day goes well!!
    Nancy

  5. Maggie Kate February 11, 2009 at 10:41 am

    I couldn’t help but bawl the whole time I read this piece and of course the Happy Birthday to my dad.
    When I read Margaret & Me I realized something about Grandma, that Alzheimer’s only picks the people that can handle it. The people that have strong character, who are witty and charming. You are right about the towels in the fridge, you have to just accept that and giggle about it because if you don’t you will drive yourself crazy. And we all know you are crazy enough =P

  6. serendopeity February 11, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    And that’s why I love you Magz.
    xoxoxoxoxo
    Aunt Nance

  7. serendopeity February 11, 2009 at 3:44 pm

    P.S. I have Margaret and Me on the table to re read when I get a chance. I remember reading it while I was sitting around waiting at the chemo clinic. I do remember laughing out loud at some of it and trying to hold back tears at other parts. I think that when I read it this time I will have a better understanding of what he went thru. I miss you – when are you coming home Magz?

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