An email from my oldest daughter, Tovi
On the ride back home to Wilmington from Richmond … I did what you know I often do…I cried and was sad pretty much the entire four hour trip.
Since I left Richmond to attend the University of South Carolina in 1990 it’s always the same. Richmond was our home, the only home I ever knew growing up and no matter where I have lived since, coming back makes me remember how much I miss it. And that why the sadness and the tears.
So my boys asked me what was wrong and I said I always get sad leaving you, grandma and Richmond and that this time was particularly hard because grandma never once called me by my name. I don’t think she really knew who I was. She did tell me I was beautiful, amazing and she was soooo excited to see me. But, like I said, she didn’t really know who I was.
I keep telling myself grandma is 91 and has dementia, but that does not offer a lot of comfort.
Anyway..so I asked the boys which would be better: to be Ms. Mary (the elderly woman that I am a caregiver for in Wilmington), who knows her family and is grumpy and sometimes mean when they come for a visit, OR Grandma who doesn’t know who is coming to visit or for how long or what purpose, but is always so very happy? With grandma, everyone is her favorite … family, friends and strangers alike!
The boys immediately answered that it would be much better to be like grandma … to be happy is so much better!
Boy do they love her and her happy spirit, as do I. But, I grieve over her not remembering me and not knowing just how much of who I am and what I stand for is because of her.