Today is the first Mother’s Day without my mom, but I am not overcome with grief. I am sad that for the last several years I could not celebrate this holiday with her because of her dementia. We tried to take her out a few times, my sisters and I, but as you know if you have a family member who has Alzheimer’s or dementia, taking them out to a restaurant or store can be a train wreck. Poor mom. Her last years were miserable and I think that is what bothers me most. I tried to make her experience as tolerable as I could but there are limits to what one can accomplish. Caring for a loved one with dementia is a long and difficult goodbye.
Today (and most days) I remember the fun I had with Mom. I loved hanging out with her. She was warm, insightful and easy to be with. I wish I could show her our garden and ask her advice on what color to paint the family room. I miss playing Scrabble with her and watching the dog show on TV together. She loved animals. A gift she passed on to me and my sisters. And when something struck us funny, we could laugh for hours.
So today I celebrate Mom’s kindness, sense of humor, bright mind and beauty and the courage with which she faced life’s difficulties. I honor all moms, with and without children, for there are many kinds of mothering. And thank the Moms of the world for all they have given me in one way or another. Happy Mother’s Day!