Thursday, October 2, 2008

Aging parents

My mother (82) is getting out of the hospital today. She went in on Sunday night with shortness of breath. Way back when, she had TB, had a lung removed and lived in a sanitarium for almost 5 years. She lived through it when others thought she wouldn't. My grandmother even bought a plot for her, because she thought my mother wouldn't survive. My mother was the care giver to her husband (not my father) of 20 years. He had vascular dimentia. Symptoms just like Alzheimer's. When she could no longer take care of him, he went into a nursing home. She went to see him twice a day to feed him. When her brother was in a nursing home, she made sure he got what he needed. She is a very caring person. She was told last night that her lung is beginning to shut down. I can't even imagine what it feels like to not be able to breathe.
I envy people that have good relationships with their parents. My mother was never able to give me what I needed. I learned I couldn't trust her as she would pass on what I told her in confidence. I am quite sure I never gave her what she needed as a daughter. Our relationship is very surfacey. I would like it to be deeper and broader, but that's not the way it is. Time is running out. How do I spend the time with her that is remaining? I need to chip away at the wall I have put between us. I need to be there for her. I need to be with her for me too. I know this will not be easy, but it will be good and rich for both of us.

1 comment:

Judy Wise said...

Ah yes, my relationship with my mother was similar. We never quite got the hang of it. But the relationship does continue after the Mother has departed. And now we are good friends. Close friends. Weird but true. (photo you requested asap) xoxoxo