Sunday, November 6, 2011



It's funny and it's strange how when I read what I wrote about my mom approximately fifteen months ago I see how in some ways she's the same, and I also see how she is changing or should I say disappearing more into her self.

I will be going to see Ruthie again in four weeks with my husband, mom's dancing partner. Mom has really no memory of this anymore, where last year she was able to recall how she had danced with him and lead the way.  We were able to laugh alot when I would tease her how she was the only one my husband now enjoyed dancing with.

I called my mom today and was telling her how exciting it was to see all the people from around the world running in the New York City Marathon. I shared with her how I saw them running in Central Park and over the 59th Street bridge. This was mom's old stomping grounds for she grew up in the city. Mom had no idea what I was speaking about. I tried to joke with her that the runners were running twenty eight miles and that I would have trouble running one mile. I hardly got a response from my mom and she actually did not even want to speak about it. I find that she has stopped asking questions or have any interest in ninety five percent of what I have to say. Could I be so boring, that Ruthie has nothing to say, or more likely that mom has no images left in her memory ?

Alzheimer's what an amazing illness. Amazing not as in good, but as in how can someone's whole life just seem to disappear. Just like it never existed before. Who are they, and where did they come from.  Each Alzheimer's case is different. My mom seems to have no memory of hardly anything from her past as well as her present.

August 24, 2010 I call my mom and start to sing Happy Birthday to her. Several weeks ago we celebrated it together in Florida, yet she has no recollection about it or of Logan and I being with her.  My mom fills in her age as I sing and says that she is twenty four.  I correct her and tell her that she is 86, she then says to me “what difference does it make how old I am, I cannot do anything about it.”We both laugh and then I tell her that when I come back again in a few months, we can celebrate her birthday again and she replies, no please just come because I love and miss you.  My mom at moments can really break my heart.

 I have another good day with my mom.  My mom sounds sharp and alert.  I shared with her some cute things about going with Logan to buy him a new mattress and negotiating with the salesperson.  She understood everything and had once again given me some words of wisdom about my negotiating skills.  She was able to follow everything I said, make her comments, and needless to say sharp ones at that.  Our laughing and singing together has returned.  My mom is back and thanks again, Ruthie for making me laugh and smile. As they say what a difference a day makes!

 It is Wednesday and the day my brother comes to take her to lunch and food shop. As history repeats itself so does my brothers visits to my mom.  My mom really likes this day.  I cannot say in truthfulness that she looks forward to it because looking forward to it would be remembering how much she enjoys it, and that she cannot do .  Every week when I remind her she asks me if I know what time my brother is coming.  My answer always is 1 o’clock and then she asks me what time it is now.  She then tries to figure out how many hours till he comes, and then she repeats and asks me again what time it is and what time is he coming, since she cannot remember.  This silly conversation actually delights me.  It is almost like speaking to a child.  I guess the difference is that now I am so understanding, where before I would have felt perhaps annoyed thinking to myself, what’s her problem, or why can’t she just remember.  I probably would have lost my patience.  I’m not necessarily proud about that character flaw in my personality, just realistic and truthful about it.

Sometimes while I am speaking to her I tell her to hold on or that I have to hang up now because I want to write down what she just said, before I too will forget it.  My mom asks why I am writing it down and I tell her again about the memoir that I am writing about her. Sometimes she says that it sounds familiar yet she finds this a little amusing.  My mom says don’t worry you won’t forget it (although I can, which is a little scary to me) and she also comments that I should not ask her to repeat what she just said because she cannot remember it.  So of course we both laugh at the truth, which is lovely.  No heaviness about the truth, just a statement of what is. This is what is so precious about my mom. Instead of her being upset that she knows that she cannot remember something (or really anything), she just says it lightly and moves on.  No self pity, no poor me.  Now, even though this is my mom, I do find her to be amazing.

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