October 26, 2007

Don't Get Old, Kid

As I have posted before, my Mom is in assisted living. And it continues to make me feel like the jailor. The other day she had a bad morning. She wanted out. She wanted to "go home" she told the aids. They said she hit the staff, which I can't visualize because, as horrible as it sounds, she doesn't pack a punch. She's 84 and weighs all of 100 pounds. It is more likely that she swatted them than launching a right-left combo.

I write this not looking for someone to absolve me of my sins. The choice, although the most difficult of my 45 year old life, was for her to live alone, live with myself or my brothers or go to assisted living. We chose the latter because we felt that it would provide the best care for her at this time. There really wasn't any choice.

But when I heard the director of the facility explain my Mom's behavior the other day as maybe she was "feeling trapped", I shake. A big lump of feeling guilty is sitting in my brain right now. It just sits there and waits and pokes me on the shoulder when I forget for a nano-second where she is. And it's her own words in her own voice I constantl hear. Words she has been saying for the last 10 years that really have meaning and relevance now:

"Don't get old, kid"

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