Sadness is Here

Berwick upon TweedIn the practice of mindfulness it is important to acknowledge the moment. To acknowledge the feelings the emotions and the take note of the present.

How long does this sadness last?
The text that flashed before my eyes.
No idea. I was on week 12.
Sadness.  Our mum the matriarch of the family, her generous nature, beautiful smile and keen sense of humour, physically still here but the eyes dimmed, her smile and humour are AWOL.  The sadness is here.  Dementia is present. We mourn our mum and a loving wife.  Her personality her humour, her love of cream cakes and the passion for her family. That part has gone, we still love her – love is unconditional. But we mourn as we try to get to know her new personality, her new ways and her new found vocabulary dropping the F bomb at an alarming rate. Shocking at first and funny, but not mums style, it is sad. Sadness is here.

Chaos was all around, preparing for a short break with the kids. The kids were excited as they headed to the car. Mitch was loading the car with dogs, snacks and excitement.  I was sweeping the floors. (I like to come home to a clean house)

It hit me. The Sadness was here.

Like a bolt out of the blue, there I was sweeping the floor and realised that Mum hadn’t called to say “have a nice time, don’t forget to ring when you get there”. I shouldn’t have expected the call as mum had forgotten how to use the phone over the last couple of weeks or so and her calls to me had ceased.  In all honesty the calls had dwindled over the past 5 months.

I don’t know why it hit me so brutally that day, probably because deep down in my let’s pretend none of this is happening mode I knew when we returned in a week’s time we had “that” meeting with the social worker, to discuss a care and support package for mum.

So the holiday came and went. It was blustery, it was wet and it was also sunny. The scenery was breath-taking evidence above, the funs stars were fun and we had a nice time, a nice time with sadness loitering always loitering.

The meeting day arrived and the social worker was wonderful, she was so kind to Mum and Dad, so understanding as our tears flowed. She was fast acting when Dad the stalwart of the family, broke down and admitted he couldn’t take anymore. Sadness and desperation was there. It is more than sad seeing your Dad a husband of 65 years collapsed unable to speak and take any more, physically and emotionally exhausted. We had tried we had slept over on several occasions to give Dad a break. I had been there virtually every day to take some of the load off for Dad and help out. We had lots of laughs we had trying times and we had emotional times. But now it was just too much. Too much to deal with, too much stress, too much heartache and too much sadness.

That day was tough, actually a breeze compared to this now this was devastating. We had to escort mum to emergency respite care to give Dad a break.  Mum hasn’t cried since her younger sister had died five years earlier. But now she cried, she wailed and showed us her sadness.

It should have been for just one week or maybe two. However it soon became apparent it was just too much for an octogenarian who had been dealing with much more than he had shared. The realisation was that she could no longer be cared for at home, night carers were not on offer or an option.

Dad was ill for the first week, exhaustion, relief and sadness.  Week two came and went.

It is now week 10. Sadness is still here, the mourning is present and we are still awaiting that room in the nursing home. Desperation is back.

If you have any comments let me know, feel free to share my blog, and if you want to join in the sandwiches to caviar journey please follow me and come back again soon. Thank you

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11 thoughts on “Sadness is Here

  1. Emotive post… Such a difficult time as Dementia changes people and as you say we have to get to know their new character and all the behaviours we may never have seen from them before – love for them gets us through .

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  2. Such a moving and emotional piece. I have had tears in my eyes reading it. You are so strong and it is this strength will get you through. xx

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  3. Elaine, thanks so much for your blog.

    Its good to get your thoughts down on paper. You’ll look back and be glad you did everything possible for your Mum and Dad. Your Mum has the professional care she needs now. Keep going, doing what you can. Glad your family is also involved in arranging your Mums care.

    Lots of love
    Moira

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  4. 😥 I feel your pain and sadness as I’m coping and caring for my mum whom has dementia and other health issues 😦 Mum lives with us and lives a happy life 🙂 We do have our ups and downs as mums and daughters do, sometimes it’s like the clocks been turned back to the days of stroppy teen years but I’m the mum and mum’s the stroppy teen 🙂 We have a regular daily, weekly routine in place, which works well 🙂 My only concern is that mum would like more freedom 😦 to go out on her own and that unnerves me. She’s unsteady on her legs, she has her walker, mobile phone, contact numbers etc in her bag but I can’t let her out of my sight for a moment 😦 I feel like I’m keeping her a prisoner 😥 and she feels the same I’m sure. I’m overprotective probably but how can I not be, She’s my beautiful mum 🙂 she bore me, cared for me, taught me, loved me, now it’s my turn to do the same. All I want is my mum back 😦 but I know the mum I had is not the mum I have 😥 she’s a pain in the ass, stroppy mare, argumentative bugger, repetitive parrot, and I LOVE AND ADORE HER and will do to THE END OF TIME ❤ XXX

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  5. This is such a poignant post Elaine. I feel so for you as the waiting time, however long, is so long. You know that you need photos of smiles and happy days of which I’m sure there are thousands. Sending a hug xx

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  6. Very touching post and so important. There are so many people out there going through similar experiences. Your post helps normalise some of these experiences and highlights that people don’t have to go through the experience in silence…..and it’s okay to ask for help! Hang in there and keep doing the great work you do. Thank you.

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  7. I hate that you are going through this. You are such a lovely woman and from what you’ve said about your parents, they are wonderful people too. I hate that you are dealing with losing a part of your mum that you knew and loved so much. Remember, you are never alone ❤

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