From A Caregiver’s Diary
Here she comes and here she goes, in and out of lucidity, yet she gives her all!
Helen smiles as her daughter walks in the den where she sits by the old French windows. She smiles then squints, as she is having a difficult time recognizing her daughter, Erica.
“Hello mother” says Erica!
Helen looks at the raindrops through the weeping windowpanes, as she turns her head away, as if no one walks into the room.
“Oh, isn’t that beautiful?” Helen says
“Mother did you remember to cut a fresh bundle before the showers, I really would love to have fresh cut roses, I love the fresh smell of the petals. Don’t you?”
Erica walks over to where she sits and kisses her curly white hair, with an open grin, “Yes dear, I collected enough, just for you.”
“Oh, thank you mother,” Helen remarks.
“Is it okay for us to have dinner now?”
Erica relaxes the brakes on her mom’s wheel chair and glides her gently to the dining table where a glass vase holds her freshly cut roses.
Dinner was silent; Helen sips at her lentil soup as she bows, up and down, at the vase of freshly cut roses, up and down.
This soft quietness gives Erica lots of minutes to reflect, because every quiet moment becomes so important and cherished for her. She knows that as her mother goes in and out of lucidity, so will the day comes when she will no longer gaze at the rose garden, but will someday make her transition. It is an inevitable function, a function of her final stage.
Erica knows that, and she is prepared for it, so she spends as much time as possible acting the roles of her mother’s mother, her mother’s father, her mother’s school teacher and even her mother’s dolls. For Erica these moments are cherished because for the first time in her adult life she gets to experience the child within her mother, and almost always these reflections only serves as a reflection of her own childhood. So she was happy and grateful to play these cherished roles.
“Oh mother this is lovely and delicious, I so wish daddy could join us. When will he be home?” Helen mentions.
“He will be home in a little while, I am so happy that you enjoyed the soup,”
“Yes mother, but I would much rather having this for dinner instead of breakfast.”
“It’s such a lovely morning, isn’t it mother?”
Erica smiled and shrugs her shoulders and, removes the bowls, and lays down vanilla ice cream. These are such precious moments, she whispers to herself, but then
“Yes Mother, did you say something,” Helen responds
Erica leans closer and gave her 87 years old mother another kiss on her curly white hair. Mom, I truly love you!
Andria Patricia Harris 03/31/14