Walking with Mary
It’s been three years and three months since my mother came into my day-to-day care. It’s been just over three years since she came to live with me full-time. If I reach back further, there were years of bill paying, medication sorting, grocery shopping, meal prepping, and general oversight. I wasn’t prepared for it even though I thought I was. It’s hard and every day is different.
And no one talks about it.
Sure there are a few websites with lots of broken links and some legitimate resources online and some in person if you live in the right place. But when you buy a house in the middle of COVID halfway across the country so you can keep your family together geographically while still trying to keep all of your plates spinning, ‘the right place’ takes a backseat to any place pretty quickly.
I do not pretend to have all of the answers – or even some of them, but I do have some funny stories and some suggestions and some wish-I-would-have-known-that-sooner stories.
I’ve yelled across the house more times than I care to admit.
I’ve cried on the stairs because it feels like a free zone in between the upper and lower story.
I’ve eaten too many cookies.
I’ve run too many miles on the treadmill.
I’ve gotten so mad, I broke a rake in my hand because I was raking leaves like they were the enemy.
I’ve walked out into the woods behind my house, covered my ears, and yelled.
I’ve sung Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer seven times in a row.
I’ve prayed with my mom and tucked her in and kissed her forehead every night for more than three years now.
I want it to end. I want it to never end.
(Posted Jan 16th, 2024)