Here's a picture of Mom that I took on Wednesday. Her hair had been pulled up on top of her head, I kind of liked it. I really loved that someone took the time to actually care for her hair more than just running a comb through it. I showed me that her caregiver actually looked at her and wanted her to look her best. Thank you to whomever that was.
I read an article that really had me soul searching recently. It was run in our local paper, the San Antonio Express-News in June, but I believe it was originally published here, at least that's where I found it online. I know that I have spent countless hours wondering what I could have done differently from the beginning of my parents failing health and aging. I know that we all have, my brothers and sister. We were caught unprepared. We were so used to them being the strong people that they had always been, making their own decisions and caring for themselves. Private people. I know I felt like I was stepping on their toes when we first had to start making some decisions for them.
In our reluctance to over-step, Mom had two car accidents, and Dad was slowly over-taken by his body failing him. Their lives just crumbled around them. In the middle of it all, their home was completely flooded, and they had to start all over. It seemed as though they were being challenged on all sides.
Do we do enough now for Mom?
What more could we do?
When we spend time with her, she is mostly in her own little world, somewhere in her head, having a conversation with ghosts. It's sad, and at times it's comforting. Whatever that life is, it must be better then knowing she's in a nursing home, watching a television set she can't see. Sometimes she laughs (along with someone?) Sometimes she's tense and anxious, clenching her blanket and clothing with tight fingers, to the point of wanting to hold her and sooth away whatever fears and anxiety she is feeling.
What happened in her past that conjures up these frightening memories? Whatever it was, she never shared it with us.
Sometimes when I leave there, I'm running as fast as I can, I feel so helpless.
Mostly she sleeps, blessedly.
On very rare occasions, she's there in the room with me.