Tuesday, October 10, 2006

A Change in the Weather

I have been away for a bit. I had originally planned on taking some time off to meet someone - to explore a new relationship. Those plans had to be changed at the last minute and I found myself with arrangements already made for childcare (a word that is not really appropriate for chaperoning two teenagers), so I decided to take advantage of that and go back to my hometown for a few days and visit my aging parents.

It was a good thing to do. My father is getting quite frail, spending more and more time in a place that he finds it hard to communicate from. My mother was the one we all worried about a year ago, thinking that she was showing signs of Alzheimer's and losing her memory. But now, with my father sliding quickly down into darkness, my mother has raised herself up and assumed the role of caretaker. It has been an amazing process to witness. She is now the physically active one, the organizer, the family memory. All of these things happen on a plane a level or two below optimal, but that they happen at all is what is important.

My mother and father still live at home and steadfastly refuse to leave. My brothers and sisters have tried to get them to consider a different arrangement - going so far as to secure an apartment for them in an assisted living facility. They seemed like they were going to go for a little while, but then, they said no. We all have mixed feelings about this. We want them to be happy and together for as long as possible. We also want them to live as "healthily" as they can, which means proper nutrition, good hygiene, prompt and regular attention to medications, etc. These things do not always happen when it is just the two of them.

Anyway, it was good to see them, spend time with them, hang out at their house and do a few small projects for them. I also had a chance to visit with old friends and some of my siblings. All in all a nice visit.

All of this is taking place in a larger setting that involves the changing of seasons. I caught the last few days of warm, colorful fall days and had the chance to spend one of them out in the northern woods with one of my brothers. Now, we have cold Canadian air moving south and snow is in the forecast for the first time this year.

Things are turning cold on other fronts as well, but to read more on that, you will have to go here.

I apologize for the long gaps between posts, but that is the way of things right now. There will be more later.



Blogger Sister Spikey Mace of Desirable Mindfulness said...

I'm glad you had a good visit with your folks, but sorry your visit fell through. Seems there was more to that, but I'll await the sequel patiently.

So I'll, as usual, just send hugs and support your way.

10:11 AM, October 10, 2006  
Blogger lime said...

hugs to you. i'm sorry for the disappointment and the tension it causes. but i'm glad you were able to make the best of it though and have time with family and time away.

2:28 PM, October 10, 2006  
Blogger BobCiz said...

Ageing parents pose a series of problems for their children, especially when a mental decline or progessive disease is part of the equation. Children are not always capable of looking at the parent's side and empathizing with the process of growing old and becoming more and more infirm along the way. As an ageing parent myself, with a progressive disease that may sometime in the future force me from my home, my hope is that my children will be understanding of my reluctance to leave the home we've made and move into more managable circimstances. While not wanting to be a burden to them, I still hope they will make every effort to help me retain my dignity and as much independence as my circumstances will allow. At that time I will surely learn if my parenting skills were adequate and if the wonderful people my children have become holds true.
Good luck to your folks and to you as well. Nothing is easy.

12:13 PM, October 11, 2006  
Blogger Cheesy said...

Sorry for your woes hun...but just try to cherish the moments you do have with your folks...we are all here for such a short time...please pay no mind what the extended fam thinks... it's YOUR life and the kids WILL adjust. [comment for other post]And we all make mistakes in how we handle our children. Please remember that it is school [not a big deal in the big picture] and that your girl is also still greiving... just in her own way.... glad to see you back in blogsville!

8:56 AM, October 14, 2006  

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