Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Dear Mom

Dear  Mom,

The holidays are upon us. I'm scared to take the bins out of the attic. Every ornament and every tabletop accessory is something you either gave me or bought with me while we were on a mother-daughter shopping trip. My day to day craziness usually blurs my grief somewhat but holidays and their decorations stop me dead in my tracks. I miss you so much. I am devastated that we are missing out on the years where we are best friends, battered by the scars of motherhood. We were always friends and never had those teenage fallout years but I feel like I have been cheated out of these wonderful older years. All those times you told me "When you have your own kids you will understand".....we could laugh hysterically at all that and drink wine (and scotch) and watch The Holiday. We could laugh at how neither of us cook and trade gift cards for chinese food. I could teach you how dry shampoo is the new baby powder and you could continue to try to perfect my gift wrapping skills

Your cousin Campbell died today. I know he was one of your favorites. I think he was everyone's favorite. A huge heart, mischievous laugh and the irreverent demeanor that only Browns and Braselmans understand. I feel like the good ones are taken from us too soon. I'm sure he and Aunt Kathleen are up in heaven having a cocktail laughing at the state of America today.

I wish you could see your grandchildren. I wish you could have seen Gaines get married last weekend. I wish I could tell you that I take my friends to all of our favorite places in Asheville and while it warms my heart to make new memories I am heartbroken at every stop. I wish you were here to help me through this exhausting yet rewarding part of life. 

I miss you so much.

I'll love you forever, 
I'll like you for always. 
As long as I'm living, 
my Mommy you'll be.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

A Wedding, a Brunch, a Birthday and Hospice


I have sat at my computer for hours trying to figure out how to type this update. I just had the most incredible and complicated weekend in Asheville. Some major lows, some absolutely beautiful highs, and a lot of stuff in between.

What started off with a routine visit with Mom to change out some of her closet and to meet her dedicated PA turned into a pretty serious conversation that neither my father or myself was expecting. It is one of those realities of this disease where you know what is coming next but you just don't know how it will feel until you get there.

Hospice.

I could tell Dad was choking back tears just as I was and we listened intently as her PA explained the next steps to us. 

We walked down the hallway and out of her facility and cried. Like we have done so many times before.

Hospice feels like defeat. It feels like that point in a flight where they say, "Please fasten your seat belts as we prepare for our final decent". Will their be turbulence? How long will it take us to land? Can they keep serving drinks?

I have been blogging about my mother's Alzheimer's for a long time. She was diagnosed in the fall of 2011. Each stage I have thought was the hardest and then I am surprised and shocked by the heartache of the next. 

I don't know much else. We will likely try to thicken her fluids but she might hate it. And at that point our plan is to not prolong what her body and mind are trying to do.

I hear hospice is amazing and I am looking forward to some sort of comfort from that. I hate not knowing timing and I'm not sure they can tell me anything more than we already know but hopefully they can keep some sort of barometer on the situation so I will know if I need to head home.