The simple gift of companionship

kayandkittyChristmas is a sacred family holiday to me so I headed out to visit my mom late this morning. Because of her wheelchair, bringing her to our house filled with stairs isn’t an option. I wanted to deliver some presents and see if I could get her interested in doing jigsaw puzzles again. She was asleep for the first hour but finally awoke and was hungry. She skipped the turkey and mashed potatoes and went right for the cake.

After eating , she opened up her gifts and was appreciative of the new pajama’s, sweater and pants. After the gifts we sat and worked on a puzzle for a while. I had already set it up and turned over all the pieces and organized clusters of colors. She dove right in and finished up the border. After about an hour, she asked if she could put her head down.

After she gets in bed she tells me “Thank you for making me feel human.” Sometimes I forget how important the emotions are to someone in a moderate stage of dementia. Today, we just hung out. She’s different on every visit, but today, the gift of a nice visit was mine. Received. 

6 comments on “The simple gift of companionship

  1. When normal is a fleeting concept, it’s a welcome feeling to be sure. Thank you for sharing your day with us.

    • It’s a marvel to see how often normal shows up. I didn’t think I’d see anymore normal after her incident with pain medication. I struggle to watch her fight for a life she told me she didn’t want to live.

  2. My mom always went straight for the desert too! This essay brought tears to my eyes…your mom’s thanks revealing that indeed dementia patients “get it” and are often able to express it, despite all the times they cannot. And your statement “she’s different every visit…” is what I try to capture when I write about the different “versions” of my mom… But I always believed she was still there, and I was seeing different facets of her personality–though no longer integrated as they once had been. I love this post Kay. Thank you, Hallie

  3. Thank you! I still am not sure I can tell, but choose to see her when the visit is pleasant. We had a lot of good times together.

  4. […] went to visit her on Christmas Day and after opening up presents and eating a little, she asks to lie back down in bed. I arrived with […]

  5. […] There are also those times when your loved one can tell you how much your visit means. The picture is exactly one year before my mom’s death. That day she let me know how much my visit mattered. Appreciated.  […]

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