My mother has Alzheimer’s. This is a fact. It has been progressing for years now, slowly… It is hard to see anyone struggle with an illness and none are better or worse than another. But to watch someone so close to you… Has proven to be a particularly challenging thing to deal with.
As this began, I recall a moment several years ago when my mother pulled me aside at my house and said to me “I’m afraid. I’m starting to forget things.” At the time, a part of me freaked out a little bit because I could see in her face that she really was afraid, but the part of me that knows how to manage a crisis (and juggle four children’s needs and schedules) kicked in and I reassured her that it would be fine, that we would get through it and take care of her.
Since that conversation things have gone fairly normally. She does her thing, we do ours, and every once in a while little strange things would occur. She and I talked about alternative ways to help with memory (she doesn’t like doctors), eating clean, cutting out aspertame, supplements, and essential oils. I supported her the best I could. Sometimes we don’t get along well, it’s always been that way, but we always come back to respecting each other’s space and choices and remember that we love each other above all else.
There were times over the past few years when I would notice the overall change in her… The spaced look in her eyes in my second daughters graduation picture compared to my first daughters graduation picture… And I would cry. Not only because I recognized the difference from how she used to be, but also because my grandfather (my mothers father) also had Alzheimer’s. And I know what this looks like as it progresses… So, I cry…
I cry for her… I cry for myself… I cry for my kids… I cry for the rest of the family and her friends.
Being My True Self… I have struggled to wrap my mind around this at times… But actually that would be the issue, right? It’s thinking. The soul doesn’t think. The soul knows and the soul loves. To try to figure out what is happening with my mother by thinking about it, is never going to work. Because it doesn’t make sense. But my soul knows that my mothers soul has chosen a path… That only her soul will know and understand. It’s not my job to figure it out. It’s my job… My souls job… To love her. Whatever expression her body takes or path she chooses.
Being My True Self in this case looks like standing back and watching. But to me, it’s kind of like the watchful gaze of a mother who has her eye on her child to insure safety without interfering in the path the hold will experience or the lessons the child will learn. It’s important to fall and scrape a knee sometimes… That’s just part of Being My True Self.