Posts Tagged ‘Parent’

Thinking of a Title

January 8, 2012

It has been quite a rollercoaster lately, I am in waaaay over my head with a personal situation and I finally sought help from experts.  I could beat myself up and say I should have done it sooner, etc. – but I am not going to should all over myself or beat myself up.  It has helped to know others have knowledge and experience that can really help since I have no idea about it.  I have friends who have dealt with the same thing and have offered help and an ear to bend whenever I need it.  I am also going to go to a support group this coming week –  I have been ambivalent with RA support groups before but this is something that feels entirely different.  I will see what it is like and go from there.

As a result, I have drawn a blank on what to write about this week – a little surprising because I often have plenty to say.  One bright spot every week day is my Note From the Universe to encourage me, make me smile and give me great insights.  It also helps me put things into a better perspective.  This one came and made me laugh as well as help me put things in perspective:

Dwelling on the unimportant, stressing on the unintended, and freaking over the unknown, Lee, simply doesn’t work… and are a bit like lighting a match in a dark room to make sure no one accidentally sprinkled any gunpowder on your bicycle, kept under the stairs, near the back porch, in January.   Actually, some of that wasn’t really important, but hopefully it distracted from any stigma you may have attached to freaking over the unknown. 

You’re so adorable,
    The Universe

Why not just celebrate that you’re alive, Lee, every single day? After celebrating that you don’t need a bike to get email, in January.

This one came and just made me smile and feel so good!

What do blaring trumpets, cartwheeling angels, harping harpsichordists, and celestial hoedowns bring to mind?
The Pearly Gates? Welcome “Home” parties? Heaven gone wild?
Actually, Lee, they play for every earthly sunrise and all of the moments of each day and night that follow.

Duck!! 
    The Universe

Phew… you were nearly accidentally side-kicked by an exuberant admirer returning from a hoedown, Lee, who simply adores you.

And then comes ones like this, that are so encouraging when I am rather down on myself for not accomplishing much.  It makes me realize how much I discount what I do, can do and have done.  In my mind I know that so often I am the most effective when I am just being me – God works through me so much better when I show up and get out of the way!  When I “know that I know” deep in my heart that I am doing exactly what I am meant to do, that I don’t have to be famous or wealthy or have a lot of hoopla to live my purpose, then I can cease and desist.  I feel I am in the process now, but old habits die hard.  Thank you ego for your concern and protection, I choose the positive.

If you were able to look back at your most brilliant successes, stunning comebacks, amazing catches, and smokin’ ideas, Lee, and you were to find that virtually all of them seemed to materialize out of thin air, when you least expected them, and that they had exceeded even your greatest expectations at the time, how excited would you be about the new year and whatever else I’ve got up my sleeve? 

Hubba, hubba – 
    The Universe

If I’ve ever helped you before, Lee, don’t you think I can do it again… and again… and again… ad infinitum? Actually, it ought to be even easier next time, with your new saunter.

I know there is a gift in this situation but at the moment it isn’t necessarily clear to me – it may not be until it is all over and I have had a chance to absorb and process it all.  I know there are lessons I can learn and that too is very hard to see. ( NOTE TO SELF:  Ekhart Tolle talks about being in the moment, in the NOW – well, isn’t Mom a great  example of living in the moment?  Yes, it can be frustrating but it also is an advantage because she doesn’t remember my impatient, bitchy moments.)  I have too much emotion in the situation and the person, so it is harder to detach, take out the emotion and be more objective.  I have learned I take on others emotions and that gets me into trouble – another habit of a lifetime to continue working on.  I have not had a massage for 2 weeks and I really miss it, I hope to go this coming week because it has been a way to clear out a lot of old stuck emotions and help me see things in a more objective way. Plus Debye and Monty are a big cheering section for me as well as helping me understand things better.  I have spent so much of my life “doing it on my own” – it’s part of my upbringing and then I carried it through my adult life.  I dealt with RA mostly by myself because I didn’t really have anyone I could talk to about it – seeing the doc and other patients was only once a month or so.  My husband traveled and I was alone a lot – it made me more independent – and the women my age either had kids or a job or both.  I had neither, plus they didn’t really understand  having a husband who traveled a lot.  I have often felt I march to a different drummer.

Hmmm, for having drawn a blank I have managed to fill the page.  Isn’t that often the way!  I just start and never know what will come or where it will arrive.

Lessons From Mom

December 11, 2011

I often say I am now a parent but I have no children.  I have never really been a kid person, I hated babysitting, plus the thought of pregnancy and childbirth really put me off having kids.   Then I would be left with a squalling piece of hunanity who is completely dependent on me.  No thanks!  When I was in my 30’s I wondered if my biological clock would start ticking away and make me broody.  Then our godson from Australia came to visit for 6 weeks.  That experience short circuited my clock and blew it into oblivion.

Fast forward to this year, suddenly and Life throws me a curve ball.   I am more a parent than a daughter as my 93 year old mother deals with macular degeneration and dementia.  She has become very child like, yet with an adult brain and memory. I kept thinking it would be easier if I had had a child, but a friend told me it doesn’t prepare you at all for taking care of a parent.  Mom told me the other day she misses the things she used to do when she was rug hooking – I can relate a little because I remember how it was when I had a terrible flareup and wasn’t able to do anything but watch tv.  I can’t begin to imagine how she feels or how the world seems to her.  She has periods of being quite clear, then others when she is confused and  no idea what is happening.  Yet, she has shown me living examples of things we keep hearing about – detach and live in the moment.

It has come to the point where she doesn’t think anything is hers any more – she  will say “Your dishwasher isn’t working”, “Your dishes need to be cleaned”.  When it comes to anything that needs to be done or repaired in the house, it is our house.  Even when I tell her it is her house, it doesn’t seem to register.  If that isn’t a great example of detaching, I don’t know what is.  I think she is just overwhelmed with everything and it is her way of dealing with it.  It is a great lesson in not being attached to things or circumstances; I do have too much attachment to things especially because I see the associations with them as well as the object itself.  I am very sentimental and may explain why I am such a pack rat – it’s because someone special gave it to me or it was a special occasion or I may need it some day.

When we moved from Fort Wayne to Seattle, I had to give away a lot of things – it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be because I knew I was paying the freight on that move.  I don’t know if I could have parted with things so easily if the company was paying – turned out to be a good thing and I didn’t have to agonize about what to keep.

The second lesson from Mom is living in the moment.  For her it is mostly that way now since she has trouble remembering from one moment to another or for a day.  She is constantly asking if it is all right to do something, as if she needs permission.  That was how we grew up, asking Mom and Dad before doing anything.  She enjoys food and has a great appetite, very seldom does she say she doesn’t like something we cook.  Last week we decided to try a meatloaf from QFC because Mom had said to Eddie she would really like to have meatloaf.  We cooked it and she really enjoyed it, several times during dinner she said how good it was.  I am not sure she remembered she had said it, but in that moment eating the meatloaf was a pleasure, along with the mashed potatoes and vegetable.  There was enough left for 3 sandwiches for her and each time she kept saying how good it was.

Monday is her favorite day because the Thrift Store ladies come to play Mexican Dominoes.  She can’t see the tiles but the ladies help her and they enjoy coming and spending time with her.  She makes sure there are cookies or cake or some kind of goody for them, plus she thoroughly enjoys them herself.  Mom has quite a sweet tooth, so she loves dessert – I almost think she would rather have dessert than the rest of the meal.  It is one of the few topics of conversation she doesn’t have trouble expressing herself.

In a way it has been an eye opener for me to see a bit what being a parent is like – I want the best for her and worry a bit when I have to go out for business and she is on her own.  I am sure it has had an effect on my RA, though not sure how I can measure that.  What I know is that if I weren’t doing this for Mom, I would be putting an enormous guilt trip on myself and making the RA even worse.


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