I went to visit my mom a few days ago. Well, I went to visit her and my brothers/uncles. I guess I should explain just a bit there..... BIOLOGICALLY she is my grandmother and they are my uncles. But in my heart, she is my mother and they are my brothers. Mom and PapPap raised me....from about a year till I was about 61/2 and then again from age 11 on up. That's a long story in and of itself....
Anyway, I went to go visit her and to give assistance to her and my brothers. Mom is 83. One brother had a heart attack about a week ago and the other broke his shoulder in a skiing accident. Mom is losing her memory. To tell the stories I can laugh but inside I'm crying.
She couldn't remember when I was coming or when I was leaving. I took a book for her to read (The Help). I had to tell her at least 5 times that I had brought it and that it was for her to borrow and read. The first night I kept asking for things to do to help her. She couldn't come up with anything. Later she mentioned she had nothing to wear for a baptism she was to attend on Sunday as she's lost a lot of weight. I said I'd take her shopping. She said that sounded like a good idea. About a half hour later I mentioned going shopping and she asked "what for?". We repeated the conversation. The next day I asked where she wanted to go shopping. Again, "What for?". "Mom you wanted a dress for the baptism." "I did? I have that dress I wore to the wedding, don't you think that's okay or do you think everyone will know that's the only dress I have?" "Mom you said you wanted a new dress." So I go into how it's not inconveninent for me to take her as I could shop as well. We have a lengthy conversation of how she shopped all over the mall for the dress for the wedding and how that wore her out and she ended up in Burlington and maybe we could just go there. Okay, so let's go to Burlington. We get ready and go. We get there and she asks where is the petite section and I show her. So she looks for a dress and I look for a dress and my daughter looks for a dress. My son pushes my younger son around in a cart. An hour and a half later we walk out of Burlington with a shirt for my youngest. That's it. We get in the car and I say, "Well, Mom was there somewhere else you'd want to try?" She looks at me and says, "For what?"
Dan (my brother/uncle) that he told her not to make ice tea anymore. Twice now she has told him the ice tea maker(it's electric) doesn't work anymore and when he investigates he finds that it didn't work because she didn't put the water in.
Of course this is just a snipit of the whole picture. And I can laugh at each isolated incident. But put them altogether and it gets scary. She lives alone. Dan checks on ever several times a day when he can. But still, it's scary. I worry. She's my mom. I hate to see her lonely. I hate to see her depressed. I hate to see her confused. But I love her so much.