Monday, November 25, 2013

It's been awhile

I have not felt like writing for some time. I have not been able to blog, to journal or write letters. My emotions seem to have consumed my words, sapped my ability to express my soul. I feel lost when I do not write, though this is not the first time I have had a word drought; one episode last for years. This latest drought has been caused by a combination of exhaustion, personal conflict, a busy schedule and an attempt to avoid certain emotional issues that have been bothering me.

Since the adoption in August, school has begun and we have settled into a routine of school, swim, church and busy weekends. Construction season extended into November this year so I was working longer days and some weekends plus the occasional emergency. Every weekend I had something scheduled for two months when I just wanted to catch up on sleep. I envied my teenage son who was able to take afternoon naps after school and sleep in on Saturdays. I remember sleeping like that as a teen. I still enjoy the occasional nap, but the are rare pleasures, or in some cases, rare necessities.

Mid-November a variety of things were calming down and I was beginning to feel my emotions again, really sense them. Then my nana had a massive stroke, just three weeks after we had joyously and magnanimously celebrated her 100th birthday. She shined at her party and was what every woman dreams of being at 100 - vibrant, beautiful, active, intellectual, gracious. The stroke on November 11 was fatal, just it has not killed her yet; it is sapping her life away, one day at a time. She made enough progress to move from the hospital to the rehabilitation center where she made progress fro three days, just enough to go home. Now she is being cared for by her two dear daughters - my mom and my aunt.

Intellectually I know she has lived a long, wonderful life and it is time to let her join the angels. My heart is struggling. Some of this is a reminder that we do not know when our time to leave earth will be; we do not have an "expiration date stamped on our rears", in the words of a wonderful friend.

Also, what does this death do to my son? Our first Christmas together as a family last year started with a funeral for my husband's grandmother. Vera's Alzheimer's was so bad she did not know who we were for the past two or three years, and never knew our son. This year, we are expecting another death this holiday season, this time my son has bonded with his new great grandmother. Oh, my nana loved Junior so much. She loved to tell her friends about her new great grandson! They had a special bond that is only experienced between the very young and the very old - a woman who remembers the first Armistice Day and a child who does not remember life before September 11, 2001. Will my son begin to resent holidays with our family because we the elderly in our family die at Christmas? Do these deaths trigger emotions and memories of his grandfather's cancer and death? He wants to remember great grandma as she was at her 100th birthday; those are good memories to cherish.

Junior and I have some things in common. We both had grandmothers send us off on our first day of school. He was raised by his grandparents; I was living with mine when I started Kindergarten. Our bonds with our grandmothers is stronger than typical grandparent-grandchild bonds who just visit each other. He still has my parents and Mike's parents to spend many years with plus his biological grandmother, Mike's grandfather, and Papa Willy. Mike has a grandmother still living, but her dementia has her very confused these days. The kid has lots of family to love him, support him, help him grow into a wonderful man. In fact, I have lots of family to love me and support me. We can get through the next few weeks and succeeding months together.

1 comment:

  1. Jocelyn, this post tugs at my heartstrings big time! Very well written. Thank you. Both of Lowell's parents have dementia, two different kinds. They do recognize us part of the time, but do not remember that we have been to visit them.


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