Monday, August 17, 2009

Days like these

call for photos like this ...

This is a photo booth picture of me with my mom in the early 1960s.

I've been spending a lot of time with my mom lately. She is 89 years old, in frail health and now living in a nursing home. She has diabetes, dementia, and finds it difficult to express what she wants or needs. However, she is ever-gracious to everyone she comes in contact with. Whenever someone comes up to her, she always acknowledges them with a warm "hello" and a big smile. She makes people feel like they're the most important person ever!

The biggest challenge these days is trying to feed her because she hasn't had any desire to eat for a couple weeks now. A good feeding is when she accepts a few spoonfuls of potatoes, some milk or tea. We're trying to keep her hydrated and comfortable. It is difficult to see someone you have known "forever" who was once so full of life, become entirely dependent, vulnerable and vacant. Often a smile, holding a hand, and playing some soothing music are the only things you can offer.

To see some of my artwork on the Alzheimer Society of Canada's website, look here.


Nicolette said...

I am so sorry to hear about these difficult days with your mom. I am so sorry that you are having to go through this yet again. My thoughts are with you and your family - hang in there!

Kim Mailhot said...

Hi there, lovely Dawn.
It is so good that you have a chance to send as much time as possible with your mom. I can only imagine how very hard it is emotionally that she feels like a different and very dependant person, and yet you know that the woman you have known "forever" is physically there with you. I am sure that the smiles, the gentle hand holding and the soothing music mean more to her spirit than you will ever know. You give good love, Daughter.
Big hugs !

T=ME said...

AS a care giver you are doing everything possible for your Mother. It is so hard to watch her change. I try to think of it as a cycle of life. She's very lucky to have you. Hugs, Terri

Suzy's Vintage Attic said...

Hello Dawn

You post struck a chord with me.I so understand what you wrote about. It is not easy seeing someone dear to you having to go through that. You Mother is very lucky to have a caring and loving daughter like you.
Your Mother sounds like lovely person it also comes across in her smile.
My Aunt Suzy became like that too and it made me sad to see her like that but I will always cherish the good memories I have of her. My English Grandmother & her sister also had dementia but were much older than when my Aunt Suzy had it.
It is a beautiful photo of you both.
I will have a look at your art work now.
Take care Dawn
Isabelle x

Ascender Rises Above said...

so sad on so many levels; feeling sad for what she must be experiencing too.