Saturday, July 7, 2012



Today when I spoke to my mom I mentioned that it was my birthday in eight days.  When I questioned her about what day I was born, and how old I would be, mom then said that she had no recollection of any of it.  I whispered to her my age and with humor, she answered , "you're catching up to me".  I  giggled at her quick and witty response.

When I phoned mom and her caregiver Elaine, had just been watching a love story on the television . Elaine was so excited to she share with me what my mom had just finished saying.  Mom said to her that the movie was a beautiful love story. She continued to tell her that she lost her husband a long time ago (seventeen years to be exact) and how much she really missed him.  The next thing she said was that she'd do anything to have him back.

What my ears had just heard sent chills up and down my spine. Out of my sometimes fear ,to not cause my mom any unnecessary pain, I avoid bringing up my dad to her.  At times when I have, my mom usually says that she cannot remember him.

No matter how many times I have heard this from her, I still find it amazing that to be married for fifty years and to have shared a family and lifetime together that she cannot recall any of it.  How sad this truly is.

The saving grace for me, and of course my mom, is that I know deep in my heart, that whatever memories  she just had of my dad, are now long forgotten.  She could no longer feel any pain or sadness.

"Hi mom, I heard you just watched a movie that you liked a lot". Mom answered with "yes it was very good". What was it about"?  I inquired. I then heard my mom ask Elaine to please tell me what the movie was about, for she could not remember.

The feelings of her remembering my dad was all but washed away. Something like a passing rain shower or even more, a rainbow that quickly fades away.

Mom and dad were married in 1942, when she had just turned eighteen years old.  My dad was turning twenty one and soon to be shipping off with the Navy. They were married for fifty years, and now for my mom it seems to be a life that has been taken away.  I wonder how such a disease can destroy a lifetime of memories. 

Hopefully one day researchers in the medical field will be able to find a cure, so others will be able to hold onto the memories of their lives and all their loved ones.

So dad if mom could remember her most recent words, I'm sure she would say again, "my man I loved him so".


  1. What a nice story, Lisa. At least you now know that she does remember your Father--maybe she just needs something like that movie to nudge it from her memory bank. Your stories are so inspiring. Keep them coming!

  2. What a sweet mom you have..... I love how she smiles in some of the pictures.... It brings joy to my heart to see her smile despite this awful disease

  3. I think the memories come back at intervals when things remind them. My mom and dad were married 65 years and she was his caregiver for 40 with very brittle diabetes. She saved his life so many times and the ambulance drivers knew them well. She slept with her hand on him, because she could tell when the sugar was dropping by his skin becomming clammy. For the first two years after his death she said she would try and find his skin in the night to see if he was ok and then realize he wasnn't there anymore. One day I was telling this story to a nurse at the nursing home. Usually when we talked about dad she would start the story about the time the ambulance came and the sheriff and the sheriff asked if she had any children and if she did, she'd better call them because it appeared dad would die. She said, "Why, he does this all the time." The sheriff looked surprised and looked to the ambulance driver, and he said, "Oh, yes, we come out about 3 times a week and once he gets the glucose, he'll be fine," and sure enough he woke up and started visiting with the sheriff and ambulance drivers as if nothing had happened. But this one day when I was telling the story to the nurse Mom said,, "Really, I did all that. I don't remember." But fifteen minutes later she started telling the story. So those memories come - and go - and come again.