I had the strangest phone call yesterday…no more stranger than the one before that or the one before that.  Things have been slippin on these calls for a while.  And due to the complicated nature of this relationship…I have been confused about what to do.

I know that I need to go visit…but when?

Maybe it is not as bad as I am thinking.  She has always been a handful with a mean edge.

I want to do some writing about this.  But is that being disloyal?

Visiting…I do need to go out to visit.  In the fall.  Maybe we can all go out for Thanksgiving…she would like that.  I need to go out soon before this thing takes over!

Badly….Well, it is as bad as I have been thinking.  In fact, it is progressing alarmingly quickly.

Writing…I have decided to write about  this…tenderly and a wee bit gingerly.  She doesn’t read this blog…and if she did…hmmmmm…might not be good.   I am still unsure if this is being disloyal (I mean this is pretty intense dirty laundry!) . But, I think that writing about this could be cathartic for me…and possibly for those of you who are going through a similar experience.

So, I am ready to take the plunge. Dirty laundry…here I come.

You see, my mom is diving head first into dementia.  I think she knows it.  But, she won’t let us talk to her about it.  She gets very defensive and aggressive when we even whisper in that direction.  She has always been a difficult person.  Highly aggressive and very defensive.  And now…..

It is getting worse.

Yesterday she called me “stupid” and said I was a “fat pig.”

How does that even come up in a conversation?

These are not new terms of endearments…but, she won’t remember saying this when I call her today.  It will be all erased.  For her.

Must be nice.

I also recognize that behind this nasty edge…is an elderly woman who is really scared.  Maybe this has been behind her nasty edge all along.  Maybe she has always been a fearful woman.  I just don’t know.

On one hand my heart goes out to her.  I don’t want her to be afraid.  I want her to feel safe and cozy in her world.  I want her last bit of time in this life to be filled with good stuff…not this.

On the other hand I feel such intense resentment.  Not an emotion that I land in very often.  But here it is.  Raw.  And sometimes it is so intense that I see dots in front of my eyes!   She gets to go off into her own little world and leave a wave of destruction behind her. She gets to have amnesia.

But, isn’t that how it has always been?  What is so different now?

I guess now the difference is that she is old and frail. Instead of self righteously wanting to pop her in the nose…and tell her to fuck off… I want to cry.  I want to give her a big hug and tell her that everything is going to be okay.

And then there are the strange times when I feel angry at my dad for heading out early.  He probably saw this comin and decided to get the hell out of dodge.  Chicken shit.

My mind tries to tell me that there are things that I can be doing to change this.  I think that is my inner optimist…or my inner magical thinker.  I am not sure there is anything to do…I am not sure there is anything I can change…

…except things within myself.

That is the only thing I have a say over….

…and that sucks!

5 Responses to “What to do.”

  1. Did you ever read “The Education of Oversoul Seven” by Jane Roberts? It’s a remarkable series of books about this oversoul, and the souls who he looks after (and is connected to, it’s kind of hard to describe!)

    One of his people, is an elderly woman named Lydia, who is slipping into dementia. There are some amazing scenes in the nursing home she ends up in, where to the outside observer, it’s just a bunch of gorked out people in wheelchairs, drooling on themselves. But to the eyes of Oversoul Seven, Lydia and her pals are flying in their spirit bodies, zooming around, taking their time getting used to being out of their bodies. Taking their time, easing their way into the next place…

    I think that some of us want to stay very much here, faculties intact, until the last breath. And some of us need to ease our way out, coming in and out of reality, tasting that scary, unfamiliar place where we are no longer connected in space and time…

    I can easily fall into judgement about it, believing that it’s somehow more courageous or evolved or something to to be here now, right up to the end. But what do I know?

    Thanks for sharing the rawness, dearest Lynne, it’s a courageous conversation to open.

  2. Great comment Carol! I am going to have to check that book out. It is so funny because I was saying the same thing to my fella last night. That maybe part of the dementia gives her time to dream herself right out of here…in a gentle way for her. Not for us. But for her. Change has always been hard for her and I think this might give her a way to get accustomed to the idea of phasing out of this body.

    I really appreciate all that you said here. It is a really strange and difficult conversation to have…for sure. Glad that you are having it with me :)
    Love ya!

  3. Wow, ya. We expect our parents to TAKE CARE OF US, and when the balance shifts, as it often does, it is difficult all the way around. Even MUCH MORE difficult with that evil disease Dimentia.
    Another friend of mine is going thru exactly the same thing, but more hands on, being the main care giver/via a nursing home. Like she is the one to go visit often, handle problems etc. She feels like laughing some times but crying more often I’m sure. :(

    Don’t have the wise info that Carol had, and I will pass that on to my friend, but love ya! just the same. t

  4. Thanks Tara~ My brother and his wife are the ones who have to deal with her on a day to day basis. Very difficult. Very sad. And very frustrating.

    Love ya too~

  5. This is great, am going through something similar..except mine with a mean edge has refused to speak to me for the last 6 months (I am sure I am stupid and a fat pig too). Very distressing and I don’t find anyone else writing about it.

    Take care and keep venting!

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