Friday, September 25, 2015

Am I Dying?

Charlotte Walk to End Alzheimer's 2014

Walk Weekends are emotional. They are also celebratory and healing. The Charlotte Walk is this weekend and to see all the other yellow flowers (Yellow signifies Caregiver) is comforting. We aren't in this alone. The number of blue flowers (Someone with Alzheimer's) is what gets me every year. There aren't many.

After the Asheville Walk last weekend my father cooked his famous Shrimp and Grits for his out of town team members and everyone ended up on the deck. Once the crowd had left Mom turned to my Dad and asked "Am I Dying?". He was stunned. And because he couldn't lie to his wife of 41 years he told her that yes BB, there is no cure. She immediately asked if the little boy knew. The little boy is my 47 year old brother. She then picked up her phone and called me. When I see my phone ringing with her name I get chills. Something has forced a moment of clarity that she is able to pick up the phone and dial me. I answered at the height of witching hour in our house and she says, "I'm dying". I didn't know how to respond or what sequence of events had occurred to start this dialogue.

She promptly handed the phone over to my Dad who explained that after the long weekend she wanted to know if this disease would kill her. She was also concerned with who knew. When Dad responded with everyone she wanted to know how. Well, Katharine writes about it and lets people know how you are doing. And BB said, Well that is nice of her.

I hope that she would be proud of me for sharing her story.

If I kept our battle against Alzheimer's bottled up it would be an injustice to my Mother. Nobody should be in for the shock we have been in. I hope the movie Still Alice showed people a glimpse of how Alzheimer's can slowly (in our case rapidly) take someone away from you. I am also very vocal about our fight because we need help. We need support. We need calls and hugs and emails and love. From my status last week on her most recent Dr's visit I received almost 70 comments. Each one had both my father and I in tears. A woman I have never met here in Charlotte dropped off Alzheimer's Walk cookies and a bottle of wine. Tears. We need you. We are losing BB and need your prayers and thoughts and texts. Being needy isn't fun. Asking for money isn't fun. Admitting you need help is somewhat embarrassing and dings your pride. Fundraising for Alzheimer's can feel like cold calling. I know people are tired of my updates but I can't stop. And I won't stop because this disease is horrendous and is taking apart my mother slowly and painfully. 

We need you.

Krewe BB will be rolling this weekend rain or shine. We will be at Charlotte Symphony Park at 9:00am for registration and 10:00am the ceremony begins. Look for us down by the stage and to the right.

To all those that have donated so far I am forever grateful. I am currently the #3 fundraiser in Charlotte (on the participant level). I have almost hit $5,000. I pray these funds help find a cure. My link is here.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Lord Huron-Strange Trails

When I drive up to Asheville the temps drop, the landscape curves and my mind wanders. It's usually a solemn drive as I'm on my way to help with my mother. Lord Huron is typically what I put on once I get past Shelby and see the Blue Ridge mountains rising up past the highway. I do my best thinking in the car. Trips home still stir memories of comfort. I can smell the bacon and fried egg on toast my dad will cook with the windows open letting in the cool morning mountain air. I trade my flats and make-up for glasses and fleece. I might have two homes now but my childhood home in Arden will always have my heart.

Lord Huron released a new album and somehow I totally missed it. The first track is my favorite so far, skip the second.