It’s been a while since my last post. Sorry about that. New job and all… these blog posts are sometimes tough to write… not because it’s especially difficult to express myself, but rather because I feel like we’re in a bit of a lull. Nothing is really happening with my mother. She’s mostly the same. I see little changes… but for the most part, she’s not any worse… I suppose the biggest change, which I’m clearly used to—already—is her poop situation. She has more accidents than say a year ago… but, you know, what can we do? It is what it is. Funny how you just accept things. Deal with it. Cope as best as you can. No point in crying. It won’t remedy the situation. I’ll use diapers when we’re going out for long periods of time—or rather, I will try to diaper her. Not always easy. Especially when your own mother is stronger than you are.
Anyway, my point. Changes. Better. Worse. Happy. Sad. Not really…
Because of my mom’s type of dementia, she is never “lucid,” whatever that means… there are no moments of wonderful clarity where my mother returns to her old self……………. my guess is that when someone actually has a lucid moment it’s like walking out of a dense fog, only to walk back into it again as the moment passes………………… my mother doesn’t have those moments………. she never really did.
However, she did do something recently that was just precious, maybe that was a glimmer of lucidity—sorta, kinda……frontotemporal lucidity, maybe…. I should preface this story by saying that I love of cats. I absolutely adore them, especially my own two cats……. I grew up with cats. My mother was also a huge cat lover………… we could never say no to a poor, homeless cat—which would explain our collection of cats over the years………….
Jon, my boyfriend, was over at my parent’s house. He has only known my mother as she is today. Severely demented. As her disease has progressed, she has sort of forgotten that she loves cats…. it’s actually rather sad, because two of her cats still try to rub up against her legs or simply vie for her attention. Most times, she just gets annoyed with them…. or pushes them away…. or ignores them……… occasionally she’ll pet them, but she doesn’t seem to understand that they want her to love them… I will say, she remembers that she has to feed them, so I guess that’s still there. Well one evening before dinner, my mom was sitting in her chair when her cat, Emilio, came walking by. Emilio rubbed his head against her ankle and she actually picked him up, held him in her arms and gave him a big squish—or a hug. I, much to my cats horror, am a massive squisher… but when we squish, both my mother and I make a little noise… Jon smiled… “So that’s where you get that from….” He saw a piece of me in my mother. I had forgotten about that myself… I don’t know what qualities I have inherited from my mother….. sometimes I feel like my memories of her are lost in that same fog…. yet I have no lucid moments… sometimes I dream about her, but she’s demented in my dreams.
I have never dreamed about my mom before her disease….
I am loving Emilio right now. What a beautiful experience. We take what we can get when the fog is so thick.
I saw an update to your blog come in yesterday’s email. I didn’t have time to get to it until tonight, however I can actually say I have been looking forward to reading it all day today. I found your blog about 2 weeks ago. I had a bad day with my demented mom and I needed to find some consolation in reading so I began Googling blogs about dementia and parents and I found your page! I REALLY need to read your writing, I enjoyed it, I could relate to it, I loved it, and I read and read until nearly 2 am that night, all on your blog pages. NEVER think your writing isn’t meaningful or not something good enough to post, you have no idea how much it helps those of us out here seeking some meaning to this craziness! Anyways, my mom is still lucid and I am cherishing every day, good and bad. Had a bad one on Sunday, needed to read something you wrote and up pops an email update form your page! Ironically, today in her room my mother glanced up at the cat calendar I got her which is hanging on the wall and before she made an exit from her room she glanced up at it and said, “I miss my cat.” She and I both have a love of cats as well and lo and behold I climb into bed with my laptop to read your recent blog posts and it’s about cats (BTW – love the B&W photo of this kitty’s face!) Odd how timing finds its way into our lives in perfect moments of need. Your writing brought a small piece of peace into my world when I read your blog tonight. It presented beauty in a mother daughter relationship gone south because of a dreadful disease that finds us watching a family member die right before our eyes while they are still living. Thank you for sharing your “Squishes” piece. I’m glad Jon could share in the moment with you to see you in your mother. Precious >^..^<
Hi there, thank you so much for your note. i really appreciated it…. your encouragement means a lot…. i’ll try to keep writing! thank you for your support! KAT
you have all your energy set on taking care of her, the memories of what she was like before the disease will come back to comfort you, when she´s no longer with us.