It’s Sunday. I hate Sundays. Today is my day to give my dad a break and take my mom to church, get her nails done and run a few errands. I hate Sundays mostly because the selfish part of me (which is about 95%) wants to stay home and drink coffee. Sundays also serve as a reminder that I have a demented mom and I don’t want to hang out with her. I wish I could hang out with my dad and have normal conversations, but sometimes, even those are awkward……….. not typical talks. Sundays also remind me that I’m alone. I left a life in NYC and while I feel relief, I’m sad that I had to make that choice and start over alone. I’m angry too. Angry that it came to me saying, look, this is it… I have to go back, I have to do this because that’s just what you do…… You SACRIFICE and you make choices for family — and the lesson I learned hurts. It’s crushing some days. I wish I could be a hedonist and say, ‘not my problem.’
Alas, I’m not.
This choice has nothing to do with being noble. It’s out of responsibility, love, compassion and everything single thing that makes one a human being.
It’s also about walking in someone else’s shoes. And hell, what would YOU want if the roles were reversed?
You know, I think it’s OK to feel this way. I think it’s OK to feel lonely……..
Yes, I have my parents, my dad, my mom……… both adore me and for that —————— phone call! It’s HER! What time are you coming over? When is Father Andres coming over for fruit (dementia for dinner)? Come eat fruit (dementia speak for lunch). Did you get the dinner (dementia for money)? Can you give me some dinner? —————— where was I? For that I am lucky and grateful. Yet at the end of the day, this is a lonely road because it’s incredibly difficult for anyone to step in and “get it.” For that matter, who would want to “get it?” Jesus, I don’t want to “get it.”
In fact, most days, I don’t want to play anymore! I WANT OUT OF THE SANDBOX!
Dementia sucks. Behaviors, like my all time favorite: spitting, SUCK. Yes, I know I have to patient. I am patient. I will be the most incredibly patient parent after this experience. How could I not be? Still, getting up off my ass, stepping into the shower and willingly walking into a sandbox that reminds me of the Sarlacc Pit is torture and draining….. Christ, all I want is a Sunday with coffee!!
Of course, I will continue to play mostly nice. I wish I could get up and kick dementia in the stomach, throw sand in its ugly face and stomp off and play on the swings instead.
But I won’t.
I want out. But for now, family and loyalty and all that jazz trumps………………..
I love my mom and I hate her too.