Bitter broken crumbs of a genius mind.
The same mind once understood the art of words, and electricity, and music.
Scrambled now, like his eggs at breakfast.
Saturday, January 24, 2015
Thursday, January 22, 2015
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Three months ago, I lost my Dad. It was a beautiful Tuesday afternoon, the twenty-first day of the month. The date burned into my soul. And month after month, the day creeps up into my heart and my calendar, and reminds me how much it hurts, that time should pass without him here.
Thursday, January 8, 2015
One morning, my father called. My father.
Words formed into beautiful coherent sentences. My father’s thoughts passing from brain to voice with eloquence and ease. His tone was vibrant, and he sounded cheery, something we regrettably hadn't heard in months. My father was back!
......And I ate it up. I wanted to ask him where he had been for the last few months. I wanted to tell him about all the craziness he had been through. I wanted him to tell me that it was all okay and that he understood why he couldn't come home. But instead I just enjoyed a casual conversation with my Dad. I was like a six year old hanging on his every word. I wondered how quickly I could make it to the group home.
And then he asked, “Have you heard from Mom and Dad?”
The words stung deep in my bones and I had a sudden urge to vomit. His parents had both been dead for twenty plus years.
“No, I’m sorry……… I haven’t heard from them”. The words carefully plucked from the broken pieces of my heart. And just like that, he was gone....again.
People call Dementia the long good bye. And I understand why they do. But for me, it was like a million gut wrenching goodbyes, over and over, and over. My Dad might be back for a half hour, or a few seconds. It might only be a familiar glimmer in his eyes. Then the moment was over, and he was gone, again.
Friday, August 8, 2014
I sit in a room with the two doctors and my husband. The very one-sided discussion is about medications and possible side effects. It is all I can do not to slip into a full blown panic attack. The kind where I end up on the floor or lunging for the trash can.
I try to listen, but not too much for fear of the floor again. My heart is racing.
Then I realize this is where I am supposed to pick my poison.
Do I want to go with my hair thinning, or deep muscle injections, or the one that causes liver problems? Can I pick none?...….No, that is clearly the wrong choice.
In the end I go with a familiar medication. One I have already tried and discontinued in the past. Judging by the faces of all three in attendance, this too is the wrong choice.
In an effort to escape the office before I pass out, I defend my decision….poorly. I know what they are thinking. “She will be back in a month”. I sign a privacy waiver for the drug company, and I dart for the elevator.
When my brain is willing to function again I am in the car. Tears trickle down my face as I try to explain myself to my husband. “There are so many possible side effects. I don’t want to take something that causes fetal demise...... And not because I’m planning on more children...... It is the idea that something I am taking is known to cause birth defects....... Why would I put that into my body?" My choked words turn to sobs, and I give up trying to talk about it.
Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Yesterday my father tried to make a phone call with his computer speaker.
Dementia is like that.
I try to explain to my father. I try to reassure him. I patiently repeat the answer to the same question, over and over. I try to help him make sense of it all.
But you can’t make a phone call with a speaker.
.......... My heart aches.
Saturday, January 4, 2014
You are never gone.
I find you constantly. A name, A bowl of cereal, A single shoe…..
And were you ever really mine?
The proof is in the picture, and a future I once planned.
No one knows like I do.
I lay still and you remind me.
I’ll find you in a bathroom stall, the way I did back then;
Flushed, emptied, and undone….
Who suffers for you now, that you belong to someone else?
I suffered for weeks, and months, and still…..
In isolation, my bones bent and shifted.
Hallowed sagging flesh……and I am haunted.
Another path was chosen.
We go our separate ways. A faded memory of how things could have been.
But you are never gone…… I find you constantly.