LUCKY, LUCKY ME
I'm back home approximately three weeks now, since spending seven glorious days with my mom. I like using the word glorious, for when I look at all the wonderful pictures I have from my visit I see such joy on her face. These memories are still in my conscious and light up my life.
I remember guests in the hotel asking if I was on a vacation and how long I was staying. My answer was always the same. I would be there for eight days and the reason for my trip was to spend each day seeing my mother, who was in a nursing home. I would mention that she had Alzheimer's. Politely the answers were always the same. "I'm so sorry." I took notice of my response, which was as genuine as the smile on my face and I answered," I feel so fortunate to still have her."
If I let my mind travel down certain paths, I would feel some sadness. For myself and mom, I know that I need to remain is the "space" of feeling blessed.
Since then each day that I phone the nursing facility, even if I cannot reach mom, I have a connection with all the nurses. This makes me feel secure that my mom is being well cared for. The nurses know that she is loved by her family and not forgotten.
Even if my visits are not daily, my phone calls can be. I've been calling my mom everyday for the last nine years and this means the world to me, something that I will not stop.
I have been able to speak to her at least three times a week since I am back home. With each phone call mom wants to know when I am coming to visit her. Although, she does not remember that I was with her, it somehow connects to her brain that I was just present in her life.
I have been so fortunate to hear her say," I know you love me and you know how much I love you." Somehow my visits bring me back into her "universe". Enjoying it now with no false pretenses that this will last is more than I can ask for.
Being a long distance caregiver is not always easy. I may not like it, although I have accepted it. Life is not always how we might choose, yet there is one thing that means the world to me; I know how much I adore her and how deep her love is for me. So today, I call myself lucky, lucky me.
My Mom My Hero book is for all the special people in our lives.
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