Letters to my Mama… Part 2
Oh how I miss you Mama. The other day you gave me a big hug and said you loved me very much. My heart blossomed with love because I miss you knowing who I am. We smiled and held hands but very quickly this disappeared as your delusions took over. In those few moments I wanted to tell you so much about the world. But what I craved the most was the knowledge that I was your daughter and you were my mother.
I talk about the difficulties of being a carer, how taxing it is, how hard it is to care for you sometimes but I seldom talk about how much I truly miss you. I miss you so much at times that I feel as if my heart has turned to dust. We still have our things, you still rub my back, you say things like “I always do this for you and what do you do for me…” it darkens my day; I want to scream at you this isn’t fair! I do EVERYTHING for you. But I enjoy the tenderness and the reminiscent behavior of childhood as you stroke my hair and rub my back. I feel like I am constantly mourning for you, never knowing when Alzheimer’s will take a little more of you.
Sometimes you ask me where I’m from. I reply, Tauranga. You ask about my parents and I say my Dad passed away and my Mum is very sick. You look at me with sadness and tell me I should spend more time with my Mum, I hold your hands and whisper to myself, I am. I want to cry and weep. I want you to know I am still here. I want you to know I exist.
I want to tell you how tired I am. I am tired of pretending that this is normal, that I am fortunate and that I am ok. I tell myself these things to get by. I write about how grateful I am that on some day in some week you remembered I was your daughter but inside, brewing inside I want to scream this isn’t fair. Why should I be grateful for something so normal? But I do, I cling to those days as if it were my last breathe, but days are no longer days but only moments. Those moments are so far and few between that I wonder when will the last moment be.
You are in respite at the moment, I want to bring you home and not leave you there. When I visited and you looked at me and said “am I coming home now..?” I smiled at you and kissed your head and said, ‘soon Mama. I will come get you soon.’ As hard as it is, sometimes it is harder to be away from you. I miss your connection to me I miss you knowing me when you are with me and that is hard, but when you aren’t with me I just miss you and I don’t know which is harder.