Thursday, May 31, 2012


"Faded" for Illustration Friday
Faded was the topic on Illustration Friday this week, (it is an artist's website, with a new theme every week.) It's cool, inspiring and fun.  I used to publish one all the time, these days, maybe once every three months.   I was visiting Peggy yesterday and her bureau is crammed with framed photos, gathering dust.  Photos in albums on the shelves, boxes of photos and framed one's in piles.  No one is looking at them any more.  She can't really see them, I don't really like trying to show her or talk about them.  I wonder if I should just take them down. 

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Best Mother's Day Present

We were all around the table last night.  I asked "What do you guys want to do for Mother's Day?"  Sunny says, "First, we should go visit Nana."

My thoughtful, beautiful 9 year old.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

It's okay.

Every time I write an emotional post when I stop in to see her I am amazed at how "used" to her I am.  I know it's intense reading these stories, it's intense writing them.  It's a place I can put my emotions and feelings, when I'm not with her.  But, honestly, when I'm with her it's okay.  She was getting her hair done, the fish tank guy was there, lots of hub bub, and I had lunch with everyone.  I fed her a tuna sandwich and I was talking about her in the third person to some of the others.  Then, I'd ask her if she's happy here.  "Oh, yes" she would respond.  I think that is the hardest part.  Not knowing what she knows, does she know I was talking about her?  Anyway, that's not what this post is about.  It's about accepting her and being with her, the way she is, it's okay, it's not great, it's not what I want, but it is okay.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

A Beacon in the Trader Joe's Parking Lot

I ran into a son in the Trader Joe's parking lot.  His Mom has Alzhiemer's and was at Sunrise when my Mom was there.  We used to chat a little when we were visiting.  "She's doing pretty good" that's what we said to each other, but we both knew that was a response for other people.  He rolled down his window a little further and then we talked.  We smiled and kinda chuckled about how strong our mother's were, and how they were still kicking.  We talked about how our Mom's were healthy and vibrant and beautiful and lovely and didn't smoke to much or drink to much (for women of their era.) We shook our heads, wondering why them...  I asked him how he is doing. "Okay" he said.  He had a lot of stress a while ago, but he's learned to take better care of himself.  I admitted it was getting harder and harder for me to visit Peggy without getting depressed.  We stood there, in the midst of our errands, the craziness of the Trader Joe's parking lot and smiled at each other. It was really nice to see him.

This is hard to explain, but seeing him gave me the feeling as if I was  in Europe, or Africa traveling for a long time and I just ran into someone from my home town.  Someone with whom I can relate to in this foreign landscape. Someone who speaks the same language, with the same accent, someone who knows why things are different here, and how you can even taste it in the water.  He know's this because he is from the same place I grew up, the place where we had Moms.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The Power of a Library Card

Gidget loves reading, in fact she's actually learning how to read.  I'm not bragging and I know it doesn't really matter when you start to read, as long as you do end up reading.  But, she's my daughter, and Peggy is her Nana and besides,  it's our blog, the perfect place for bragging, because she's not yet 5.
So our days have been happily filled reading and sounding out words and going to the library.  Today we brought her library books over to Peggy's.  We sat in the big couch and she listened to us read.  The sound of our voices made her happy.  The simple act of holding a child and a book and reading out loud is a memory and a bond all of us share.  I was happy that we shared it with her today.  After all, she's the one that helped me get my very first library card too. 

Good News or Bad News?

I need to catch up on this month, filled with good news and bad news.  It's hard to distinguish the two.  Honestly.  I saw her one day, and thought the worst.  I called my brothers, I thought this was near the end.   Was this bad news or good news?

Then I'd see her the next day, up and chewing her meat, smiling, like everything was totally normal.  Good news or bad news?

But, every time I walk in the door.  "Hi Mom" I shout out and she says "Oh, hi Lois"(funny meeting you here) or "Hi Lois" (I'm just having this stranger spoon feed me my dinner, I'll be right with you.)  I can't believe it.  How does she recognize me?  She seems to have no idea what is going on, where she is, that she is even in a wheel chair.  How does she know it's me?  To talk to her, you have to stand right in front of her, prop her up because she's stiff as a crooked board then try and make eye contact, and then it is still not very clear if she is even looking at you.  But she seems to knows it's me. Then I think, if she does know it's me, how much does she know or understand or FEEL.  This seems like very bad news.

But how does she know it's me?  How does she recognize me, when she can't seem to see 12 inches in front of her face?  I finally figured it out.  It's my voice.  When I shout out "Hi Mom" she recognizes my voice, and goes to that place, that comfortable place where I exist.  I don't know where, but somewhere in there.  I exist.   This is good news, I think.