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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Surviving the Last Days

Once again my mother has confounded science. I should never have suggested on my last post that she was dying. Two weeks later she is still having mostly good days and she has survived longer and in better shape than most.

Last night I took my 11 year old grandson to visit her. When she saw him her eyes grew bright and she sat forward to say, "Hi, Hayden!" What is remarkable about that is she has become so weak, she only whispers.

Grandson was so sweet. He chatted away with all of mom's housemates and patiently answered the question of how old he is and what grade is in several times, to the same person. He promised them all he would come back soon. He gave his great-grandmother the longest and warmest hug a person could imagine. She held him as tenderly as if he were a new baby and she laid her cheek on his head and drew strength from his love.

Back in the car he said he wants to go see her again next week, do I think she will still be here? He was also very impressed with her extremely bright yellow skin, which is darker and brighter than the last time he visited.  At home he told his grandfather she looks very, very sick.

Many of the adult children and grandchildren in her life find it so hard to visit someone so ill. My own husband who loves her dearly and would do anything he could for her, is distressed by every visit and has cut back to short weekly visits it is so hard on him. So why does a sweet eleven year old like to go visit very old people who are medically fragile?

He goes because, "It makes them so happy."

Too bad the people of the world do not have such compassion for each other.

1 comment:

  1. Shez, that was so beautifully expressed. I could see it all so clearly. It is hard to watch and wait while a loved one passes. My own mother had Alzheimers and so she was "gone" for a long time before she was truly gone. She passed away in March. I know this is a hard time for you and your family. It IS hard, because we have all our life history with our loved one, and we feel our loss profoundly. That's as it should be. The little ones are blessed with the innocence of seeing only that our presence brings happiness. All of it is life at its various stages, with all its sorrow and all its joy. My thoughts are with you as you move through this time.