Small Talk

I miss my mother

August 27th, 2014

Life has its ups and downs. I used to navigate it with the help of my mother. I cannot anymore because she has Alzheimer's disease.

Today is my birthday. She doesn't know that. She doesn't know her own age or birth date anymore.

I went to visit her at the care home and decided to just tell her what I've been enduring. Short form, of course, but I wanted to share. I want to think some part of her understood.

We sat down as we usually do and, instead of making small talk because I know she can't really converse, I monologued my problems.

At the end, I looked for comprehension. Nothing.

I continued in vain, "I miss you. I miss when you were well. I miss talking to you."

Nothing.

I went on. "Sometimes I have conversations in my head with you and imagine what you would say to me. I need you."

Nothing.

"What do I do, Mom?" I asked.

Nothing.

"You don't know, huh?" I said sadly.

"No," she replied.

She has never been a great advice-giver but I have always liked knowing she was in my corner. "That's OK," I said. "Just tell me you love me."

"I love you. You know that. Of course I love you," she smiled.

And that will have to be enough.

12 Responses to “I miss my mother”

  1. Minnesota Bill:

    Your mom took care of you and loved you when you were small and couldn't give anything back or really understand. Life sometimes has a cruel way of turning the tables on us later in life. Just love your mom and do all you can for her. And best wishes for a very Happy Birthday!


  2. Ken Conklin:

    Happy sad-birthday to you, Diane. It's your 34th, right? *LOL

    When I was a little boy I had an imaginary friend. I guess now that you're a big girl, you have one too. 🙁

    As I watch you on TV right this minute, I see a woman who looks and sounds the same as several years ago on a different channel. I'm reminded that we never know the depths lying beneath the surface of whom/what we see. Perhaps someday, in the midst of another non-conversation with Mom, she'll casually mention something you said to her months ago that you thought went in one ear and out the other. Or perhaps not.

    E malama pono Diane.


  3. Nani Medeiros:

    Catch my hug Diane...it's a big one. You are right....it is enough.


  4. aloha2121:

    I know the feeling well. I took care of my mother, also afflicted with Alzheimer's disease, for 13 years. It is a cruel disease which robs the afflicted of their dignity and soul while they are alive.
    Fortunately, the memories of the better times, help heal the survivors.
    Your blog reminded me of mother in good and bad times.
    Aloha.


  5. boya_jr:

    I had an awesome time with my dad in his last year with dementia/ALZ. I kept thinking that my visits with him were numbered (which they were) and spent each day like it was the last. I always told him that "I'm going to miss you dad." Today, 8 months after he passed from aspiration pneumonia (a common late-stage dementia killer), I think about him everyday. After work when I visited him, I removed myself from the busy, stressful world around, and focused on the quiet sanctuary with him - two souls connecting for maybe the last time. I realized that at the end of the day, most of my worries just didn't mean much in the long run. Super tough, especially for you. I didn't really connect with my dad as an adult until he was already showing signs of the disease, so I don't know how it would be like to speak to him man-to-man. Again, we had a great time in the last year.


  6. carokun:

    take respite for yourself, too. caregiver stress amongst other things can cause depression, anxiety, etc. look into respite caregiver services. catholic charities hawaii and other organizations offers such services. take care and <3 that you mom said that. precious and priceless.


  7. M:

    Hello Diane,
    Just love her just as she is.
    Happy Birthday Diane!


  8. Darlene:

    Diane,
    Hau'oli La Hanau...
    Hugs to you and your mama.


  9. rayboyjr:

    Hey Diane ... Happy Birthday!!! ...

    ... I can't even begin to comprehend what you're going through ... but I can offer this thought ...

    ... some of the best times that I shared with my mom and dad ... were quiet moments spent together ... no words ... no expressions ...

    ... wishing all the best you to and your mom ...


  10. Kage:

    Happy Birthday Diane.

    Take care of yourself and love your mom.


  11. Annie Lam:

    Hi Diane,

    I can feel for you. My sister back in Malaysia also has this and I am absolutely shattered by the thought of her not remembering me anymore. I will be visiting her in October and doubt she will recognise me this time. Nothing we can do for them but just continue to love them and treasure the good times spent with them.

    Take care dear.


  12. ayeartogo:

    I am 32. The only person who never forgot my birthday is my mother. Now she doesn't remember anything. She has Alzheimer. I prayed to lord to give her my good 10 years so that she can live a life of 10 more years with comfort with every loving one around here. This is not going to happen.
    I never get the chance to literally tell her how much I love her. Its never going to happen. and till the day I die, I have to live with this.


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