Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Someone dropped a pumpkin seed in the herb garden. Was it one of those chipmunk rascals that keep digging an underground condo in these beds? Could it have been a bird with a poorly digestive track? Maybe a seed packet opened in my pocket and dropped to the ground? I'll never know. My best guess is that this will be either cinderella or luna variety. Time will tell! Also, it will take some massive restraint on my part to leave that rambling vine alone! Once it crosses the walkway, all bets are off! I like a clear walkway and I spend a lot of my time 'training' the thyme to stay in its bed instead of crossing over to visit the oregano. I find that I need to let go, and let Mother Nature. I am learning the lessons I needed to know. I am being led - again.
Yesterday, when my mother and I were leaving the nursing home, 'Elizabeth' was purposely shuffling into my father's room with the help of her big plastic walker. Mom greeted her, offered her a candy bar, and continued to leave the room. I was a bit confused because, well, I've learned EVERYTHING that I know about Control from mom, and it surprised me that she didn't have something to say, or do, about Elizabeth's visit. In the lobby I quizzed her and her response surprised me. She informed me that she has learned to view every day as a gift now, and that whatever occurs is meant to be. So, when I looked back over my shoulder to see Elizabeth sitting with my father, I realized that THIS was not something anyone would deem unusual at the nursing home, or in my mother's mind. What WAS unusual was my reaction to the scene unfolding in front of me. I was unable to allow the thyme to cross over to visit with the oregano!
Alzheimer's Disease will break your heart. There's no other way to say it. It is a grand scale thief that carries off what is human and real and essential to each of us. It is relentless - it chips away until there is nothing left - no flicker of recognition, no genuine smile, no response. I peer into my father's face, searching for some sign that he is awake and aware and that he hears me stumbling over my words, trying so desperately to say what I think he needs to hear. Something that will stir a memory - a response. I thank God that he is not in physical pain, but then I wonder - HOW would he let us know if this were the case? The nurses pacify me - they pat me back into place with gentle, but firm resolve. IF there was pain, they assure me, they would know.
I come home and start working on another apron - this one for Hilary to take to a bridal shower that is being orchestrated for her stepsister. I am glad for the busy work - a day that has real purpose and time restraints. Left to my own, I am afraid that I would sit in my melancholy state - accomplishing nothing, taking in nothing. I AM LEARNING WHAT I NEEDED TO KNOW: each day is a supreme gift. I need to be grateful for each day.