** taking a slight detour from my account of dealing with my depression to talk a little about my mom
Those who have read my blog for a while will know that I am a live-in caregiver for my mother. Two years ago, we were beginning to have serious End of Life discussions and were starting to work on Hospice Care for her. Since then she has made remarkable progress, is very self-sufficient and celebrated her 89th birthday in September.
One day when I got home from work, I saw that she had made 10 or 12 dozen cookies. I knew she had be worried about not being able to send cookies to her three grandsons that are in the military (two of them, brothers, are in Afghanistan this holiday season). I was happy to see that she had been able to make them but she seemed somewhat dejected.
Asking her why, she said that she just couldn’t make a batch of cookies like she used to. She’s used to a batch being 10 or 12 dozen and she just isn’t strong enough to be able to do everything making cookies from scratch requires, especially on that scale.
One of us told her that she didn’t have to make them all at once and over the next two or three weeks she ended up cooking 70 dozen cookies. Yes, 840 of them.
She’s also been working on making quilts for the grand-kids, so they all can have one. She’s been over-achieving a bit lately, showing that she can still do things, just not as quickly as she used to.
She’s also decided that she’s going to cook Christmas dinner. Cooking is especially tiring for her because she doesn’t tolerate the heat of working on a stove top very well. We may have words about her sitting down that day… “Mom, you need to go sit your butt down for a few, we can do this“ “I’m your mother, don’t..“ “Yeah, you’re my mother and if you want to stay that way you’ll go sit down for a few”
One common theme in all this is that she’s worried she won’t be able or won’t be around to do it next year.
It seems that as people get older and can’t get out as much, they seem to have less and less contact with old friends, leaving something of a void. Those friends are also elderly and may have their own health issues to deal with.
And, sadly they pass away. This past weekend, one of my mother’s closest friends, whom she had known for over 50 years, passed away. At the visitation last night, it occurred to me that this wonderful woman had been the last of mom’s closest friends, everyone who had been in that “inner circle” had already passed away.
I’m wondering how this loss will affect her during the coming year, is that “she won’t be able or won’t be around” going to become a self-fulfilling prophecy?
© 2012 Scott Strange, Strangely Diabetic and http://StrangelyDiabetic.com