Don’t panic, mom’s not missing. You won’t find her on milk cartons or posted on utility poles.
What I am trying to say is that I have been missing mom. And, I have been missing from the home front as well.
So it’s me that has been missing!
I have had back-to-back consulting and speaking assignments over the last couple of weeks that have taken me here, there and yonder. Yonder meaning as far west as Denver and that means I haven’t been home with my mom nearly enough … and that’s where the missing comes in … a heaping helping of missing mom!
I missed her energy, her enthusiasm, her happiness, her outlook on life, and her loving me! Yep, call me selfish, but I just can’t get enough of my mom holding me tightly in her arms, telling me what a great boy I am and letting me and others know just how much she loves me … at least a zillion times a day!
But it’s her insights, humor ( she never thought she was as funny as my dad, sister and me, but we always thought she was a hoot) and just out of the blue comments that keep me thinking, captivated, laughing and waiting for more.
Going from hanging onto her every word and action to not being able to communicate at all has been really, really hard. Mom doesn’t really understand a telephone anymore and anything more high-tech than a letter never been a part of her world.
When I woke mom up this morning to tell her I was back, there were lots of hugs and “I love yous”, but no “I missed yous”, because mom was not aware of when or for how long I had been gone. She only lives in the moment, not the immediate past or the future for that matter. And when I say the future, I mean the next minute, not further out than that.
But what I get in the moment, moment by moment, is priceless.
I was fixing mom her favorite breakfast, a big bowl of Raisin Brand (not meant to be an ad and I am not getting paid for product mentions), when I asked her if she knew where milk came from.
“Chickens”, she fired back.
“I don’t know just how they do it, but they get with their mamas and do it. That’s just how it works. Alwyas has.”
She was singing “You Are My Sunshine” the whole way to adult daycare and when I was leaving, I overheard her holding court with a couple of her buddies.
Mom proclaimed, “This world is full of chaos. You need a person who helps you out to know the glory of the world. That person is my boy, Tom Laughon. You are not going to steal that guy from me. He makes you laugh. He doesn’t make you feel you are crazy. He just knows how to make people feel good … he always has.” Then she added, “He’s gone now, but he will be back for me, that’s one thing I know.”
I stopped and looked back at her. Maybe mom does miss me when I am gone. Who really knows?
But, one thing I do know is that I was already missing her … again!
I have wanted, since I first found your blog, to write and tell you how lucky you are, but that does seem odd, to tell someone who is caring for a mother with Alzheimer’s how lucky he is. But, you are!
I don’t think I have done anything right for mom in my whole life (she’s OCD) and Alzheimer’s is not making it better. Although, I will say that the odd time when something breaks and she says, “Thank you so much.!” It’s worth gold. I am getting that more lately. So, I guess there is still hope.
I thank my lucky stars every day and every night. Thanks so much for your comment, I too know what a treasure hearing “Thank you so much!” is.
Glad you are back. I have missed the posts. My daughter Ginny has started reading the blogs and she laughs and has loved all of them. I love everyone of them because they makes me feel close to your Mom. Everything she says sounds just like her. She has always loved her boy. I miss talking with Nel and think of her often. She was my special friend. I am so happy you can spend this time with your Mom. It is a special joy for her and a special joy for you. Thanks for everything you write. Although I have lost Nel, I have a new friend with these writing. Thanks to my new friend Tom
Your Mom is one smart lady. Thanks for sharing! The world IS full of chaos and you DO need a person to help you find the glory! Inspired.