8th Christmas with Mom

This year I’m not even putting up a tree. It’s just me and mom and she doesn’t know, nor will remember if told, that Christmas is happening. The day of, when all the family fawn over her with their perfunctory phone calls, she will say back to them, Merry Christmas to you too, and they will hang up thinking she remembers them but they don't know she will forget that phone call in less than a minute.

This week I wrap the boxes of candy, and sign the cards Love, Mom or Love, Grandma, and mail them out to all the family so that her tradition continues. I am unseen and unheard, the Great and Wonderful Oz behind the curtain, pulling the levers and blowing the smoke, to keep moms appearance alive and well.

Moms battery is down to 2% and will no longer take a charge. She’s in the red zone and this is all merely a waiting game for me to move on. Her time controls my time. Her clock ticks, my clock ticks, one second behind her. In the blink of an eye or the exhaling of a breath, my life will change.

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Christmas time again
by: Anonymous

You are a most loving person. This sounds so personal to me as it is between You, Your Mother and God.

I know how it feels to take care of a parent with Alzheimer's
by: Rick B

I understand how you must feel. I know first hand because I was the primary caregiver for my mother and she had advanced dementia.

My mother passed away just shy of 84 years old only 5 months ago. How I wish she was still around for this Christmas. I feel very lonely now that she is gone.

I was not going to put up our Christmas tree but I decided to yesterday to honor the memory of all the wonderful Christmas holiday seasons of the past. I am pretty sure this is what she would have wanted me to do.

I commend you for taking the appropriate actions to keep your mother's tradition of sending Christmas cards.

The horrible disease of dementia and Alzheimer's steals the recent memories, however, you may be surprised that your mother may very well have some recollection of Christmas when she was much younger.

Try to talk with her about her Christmas holidays as a child and young woman and when she was raising her children decades ago. You very well may awake some distant memories of some very happy times for your mother. I did this with my mother over the past few years. She did remember the good old days.

Take time to sit down with your mother and go through the old family photos with her. You may be surprised that your mother still has some memory of the distant past.

Please just try to cherish the time you may have left with your mother. For one day in the not so distant future, she will be gone. While one may think it will be a relief when a parent finally passes away, be prepared to know it is not quite so easy to let go. I still have feelings of remorse that I did not do enough for my mother while she was still alive.

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