Thursday, August 21, 2014

staying present

you'd think at 53 i would know how to cope with the world.
but as evidenced by yesterday's blog, i just don't sometimes.

i notice it a lot when i try to help someone i know with alzheimer's.
it's been getting pretty bad for her lately.
and some of the help i give her is the kinda help that breaks your heart.
and rattles the soul.
and totally leaves me feeling unable to cope.

on the outside, i think i look like a steady person you can count on for help.
on the inside i feel completely unhinged.

as i drove down to lowe's to get many copies of her keys made,
knowing we'd be losing a lot of them,
i could feel my soul rattling all over the darn car.

how do you 'accept' someone losing their mind?
how do you watch as they keep enough of their mind to have plenty of ego
that gets bruised by the indignity of the disease and feels angry,
embarrassed and an intense need to blame something other than what's
happening to them?

how do you witness bad choice after bad choice that you know is leading
down one awful pathway to disaster?

well, i guess i do all that by getting completely unhinged on the inside.

so i drove the back roads to the store.
thinking that if i had to handle the traffic on the highway, i might just come
completely unglued, i drove with the trees and talked to myself as i went.

that helps me.
even trees whizzing past on the road seem to help calm me down.

life is scary.
what can happen to us is so freaky terrifying.
and when we really look at the lack of control -
well it's the stuff that brings us to our knees.

i don't want to do this.
i don't want to watch her leave this way.
i don't want to have the anger and confusion aimed at me.
i don't want to deal with any of the suffering.

i don't.

and then.
when i stop and think about it.
really really think about it.
i understand that i do want to be a part of this.
that i want to be there if i can.
for me.

and that means getting a grip as much as i can.

it's a choice.

i can become unhinged to a point,
and believe me, i totally will.
but only to a point.
because i really really want to be present.
and my gosh, sometimes i find that so very hard.
but man, i want it.


Anonymous said...

showing up... I think thats what you said. That you wanted to show up for life. That you wanted to be present and open to all of it.
I guess that the universe heard you, and has answered.

Diane in AR said...

You are there - unhinged inside maybe, but you are there helping her as her whole world becomes unhinged. . .and in the maybe near future she won't even really how totally unhinged she is - once again you are witness (and heartfelt hurting for her helper) to the rough sadness of Alzheimers. . .you're there, you're helping, you are enough, you matter. . .

terri st. cloud said...

wow, diane.....that brought tears to my eyes. thank you......