best day

Moments – January 2019

It’s amazing how quickly the days have passed this month.  We continue to see small changes in Mom — grateful they don’t happen all at once!

We’re entering our 4th year as full-time caregivers and there are no regrets.  NONE!  We are blessed in so many ways.

Smiles and tapping of toes to the music you love to hear.  Old movies from the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s bring you joy.  Visits from children, grandchildren beyond bring you happiness.

Remembering important dates are beyond you, Mom, but your face lights up and you delight in hearing it’s someone’s birthday or a day for celebrating anything!  You love to see pictures.  We’ve been blessed to become the “keepers” of our family history and we have enjoyed sharing our finds the last few months.  I hope the images we uncover over the course of the next few months will continue to bring joy and a smile to your face.

Talking on the phone is nearly beyond your reach, but there are days you surprise us and a full blown conversation unfolds before us.

You prefer sandwiches and finger foods.  Rice is a no and steamed carrots are a favorite.  We always have a back up plan if you don’t like the meal that’s been prepared — and there’s always a root beer float (with a scoop of protein powder) or a fruit smoothie if nothing else appeals to you.

Bedtime smiles, thank you’s and a deep breath of appreciation.  I love you’s and blowing kisses are still a part of our nightly routine.

Thanks, Mom for being so gracious in allowing us to be a part of this journey with you.

 

the harvest

Throughout our lives we have planted seeds in our relationships.  I often wonder will the harvest shared with my kids be as sweet as the “harvest” we are now sharing with Mom during this season of her life?


My thoughts about the current harvest that is underway is that we have been blessed beyond measure!  Mom’s efforts throughout her years has been one of nurturing gentleness, kindness, compassion, joy, laughter with a generous supply of humor.  She has tended this garden for all of her years.  She hasn’t withheld her love nor her faith with each of us.  She’s plucked the weeds and tended to the plantings with tenderness and more love than we may have been entitled to in the moment —

As we go about our part now, as her caregivers tending to her garden (memories, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren) we want to ensure that the legacy of a bountiful harvest will continue on.

Gratitude nurtures the love we have for her.  The beautiful scenes she painted that hang in our homes will continue to remind us of her talent and the joy that painting brought to her for so many years.  The family favorite recipes that we’ll cook, bake and serve throughout the holidays as we remember with fondness the joy that gourmet cooking brought to her heart and delighted our palettes as we grew up.  Hand-crafted gifts and one of a kind holiday cards will continue to bring us joy as we continue the traditions that have blessed our family for so many years.

And mostly, the word REMEMBER will continue to be the best nutrient for our soil as we prepare for the next season of growing and harvest.

another day

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Today, will be just another ordinary day.  Nothing spectacular happening.  Nothing notable on the calendar…. at least it’s that way from Mom’s perspective.  To me, it’s a whole different story!

We have another opportunity to share space and time with Mom.  An experience we wouldn’t have imagined being possible a few short years ago! We get to experience everything at a “heart” level.

So grateful for
each and every smile.
moments of laughter
tapping of toes in time to the music
songs sung
shared meals
relationship
heartfelt connections
occasional bursts of conversation
zingers
rare moments of lucidity
recall of a memory from long ago
the occasional calling me by name
sense of humor
humility
curiosity
….

Looking forward to a #bestday kind of day!  Nothing says this is just “another day” in my books.

silver linings

What are you looking for today?

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Don’t be afraid to stop and think about this… I totally understand that some days it’s more difficult than others.

We are blessed with a pretty wonderful familial support system.  Not all caregivers and “patients” are and their worlds come crashing down when they can’t reach out to others.

Recently, we took Mom in for an appointment with her primary care physician.  I guess I wasn’t expecting nor was I fully prepared for the discussion he wanted to have regarding goals and other possible outcomes for the year.  While open to the process and discussion, I know I can’t make those suggested changes without the help of those in our support system.  He also suggested a few things that might make our lives as caregivers easier, but some that may not.

I spent last evening thinking about the changes… and the possible silver linings that might be there… I’m still making my list, so yes, there are many potential silver linings.    I’m game to have an open discussion and hope you, the reader are open to changes and silver linings too.  Let’s have a #bestdayever!

goodness is everywhere

See the good — make it a #bestday

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It’s been an interesting week.  We’ve experienced some highs and lows.  We’ve watched as her eyes fill with joyful tears as she hears of family news and experiences the joy of the successes we’ve shared of children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  Every one a milestone.  Photos, videos, text messages and calls and impromptu visits. #bestday

I have watched her face light up, her smile grow broader and then dim as the memory fades all too quickly. However, a day never goes by that there isn’t a thank you or I love you exchanged with everyone she meets or sees as they visit our home.

I can only hope that Alzheimer’s won’t steal that away for a bit longer… I cherish hearing her voice.  Seeing her eyes light up and her beautiful smile.  These are the good moments… to be treasured forever.