One of the most moving things I have seen recently.
The weekly photo challenge theme prompted me to post this even though it’s a video rather than a photo. A man’s descent into Alzheimer’s and his farewell through song celebrating the love and life he’s had, a life and people he will soon not miss as his Alzheimer’s makes that not possible.
My heart goes out to his family and others who are losing someone to Alzheimer’s – and to those like us who in the end lose someone very precious – for us, our mum.
Where did all the clutter in our home come from? As part of my sitting with my feelings this weekend I took on to start a declutter while J is away and here I am on Sunday evening feeling somewhat defeated. Tons sorted, bin bags filled, a shredding frenzy and still there is more. Perhaps 3 months off work and I could crack it. Decluttering leave. Must be a category along with compassionate leave or maternity leave.
So much unneeded stuff. What was I thinking accumulating it all? Like molehills mounds appear in rooms. Clothes when the wardrobes are full, piles of books in the absence of bookshelves, things and more things, things that might come in handy one day, maybe. Things I have no idea how they got here. Unwanted forgotten gifts?
Stuff. Like my thoughts and memories. All cluttering up the corners of my brain and then the occasional avalanche when they tumble pellmell into my consciousness. A weekend of acknowledging, sifting and sorting. And sadness. Lots of sadness. Loss. A chat with my ex mother in law to express my condolences on the recent deaths in her family. That chat left me with a wave of sadness about my marriage to her son and the way it ended. Feelings all raw and on the surface again. Hard to believe it’s nearly 8 years ago now.
And I just try to be with the feelings and work my way through the clutter inside and around me. Getting there…
Today I woke, seven days after the call, thinking how strange time is. Seven days, a week. But no two weeks feel the same – some painfully long, others speed by, and again more have some of each. This has been the first of those.
This week of your death has been so exhaustingly long. Minutes, hours, days and wakeful nights creep by. Hardly any of them going unnoticed. Some sleepless hours at night when thoughts take me to strange places. Over this long week emotions running high interspersed with an overwhelming numbness.
Family tensions bubble up now and then as all try to deal with this time as best we can and now and then styles clash. Good intentions misunderstood. But mostly there is caring and a deep sense of shared loss that pulls us closer.
This next long week ahead ends in your funeral. A goodbye. A blessing for your life to be read. Stories told of happier days. Condolences received.
Just two weeks ago you held my hand tight. If I close my eyes now I can feel that still. Your smile on my arrival. The feel of your kiss on my cheek. The smell of your perfume still lingers. Watching you sleep. Precious memory.
A life without you.
Only day three now but feels so much longer. Time is operating so very differently.
So many practical decisions to be negotiated and made, practical things laden with emotion, so none of them are easy things to tick off a list.
And all the while feeling like prolonged jet lag. So hard to process thoughts.
Sympathetic comments cause tears. Calls avoided. There don’t seem to be words to talk about how things are.
Feels easy to see slights where none were intended. Super sensitive. Heightened awareness.
Photos of your smile give both comfort and pain.
I just never knew that it would feel like this.
A mostly sleepless night. Dreading the day ahead. She knew the call would come. And then it did. “Sorry to tell you that….”.
Slowly and silently tears fell. Months of anticipation of this moment and yet it shocked her.
Waking after a pill induced deep sleep, groggy, stretching out in the warm bed enjoying the sensation and then she remembered the day before. The day she lost her mum. Slowly and silently tears fell. She thought she was ready but nothing had prepared her for the engulfing sense of loss. A life changed forever.