Monday, June 21, 2010

a time for deep thoughts

Corri sat beside her bedroom window pensively staring out. The late afternoon sun fell upon her face as it bounced and slid over the gently moving surface of the lake. Here and there she could see tips of white as the breeze pushed up the water, disrupting the smooth glassy surface that reflected the brilliant blue sky dotted with white puffs. It was nice to just sit and let her mind wander…the past few weeks had been unbelievably busy to the point where she had absolutely no time to herself. Dad had just been moved to a care facility – his Alzheimer’s had gotten so bad that Mum could no longer keep up with or keep track of him. Everyone in the family had pitched in when they could, but it fell to Mum and Corri as the youngest who still lived at home, to do the bigger share…Sometimes he knew who they were though most times did not, and Corri knew how difficult that was for Mum who had been his everything for so long to suddenly become his nothing. It was done now, he was in capable hands at the Home, and Corri had taken her Mum here to the campground so that she too could start the healing process….Mum hadn’t wanted to go, how could she leave him in an unfamiliar place with strangers ?? It had been surprisingly easy to leave her Dad there, he seemed not to know who they were, only new people to talk to (Dad had always been the social butterfly) and stories to share – he went off with his new friends without a backwards glance at all. Mum had been crushed, but she agreed to leave him for a bit and come back later to see how he was getting on….Corri drove her back around supper time, and other than a simple ‘Hallo, how are you?’, Dad was off with his new-found friends, though Mum could be heard muttering “…you’d think he had spent his entire life with them the way he is carrying on…”

Corri drove her Mum over to the Home several times over the next few days, and yes, even managed to persuade Mum to pack up some things so that they could leave on a vacation, “yes, Mum it’s all arranged, the cabin is ours for the whole month”…..and “it will do you good to have some time to relax”…..and finally, it was done, they were on the road with a brief stop at the Home to see Dad , and then off they went to the lakeside cabin.

And now, here she sat pensively studying the lake, the tensions of the past slowly ebbing away, much like the current was doing on the lake below. She had needed this respite, as did her Mum. This vacation was needed to build up their mental reserves and strength so that when they returned home, they could finish picking up the pieces of their shattered lives. Corri’s siblings were to check in on Dad every few days, and so far from what they had said in phone calls, nothing had changed. He still did not know who they were, nor did he seem to miss Mum, at least none of the nursing staff had said so anyway…..Mum had a difficult road ahead of her, for too long she had needed to be needed, and now would have to find a different way to use her time. Not that there weren’t plenty of opportunities available to her, she had simply chosen to not look at any of them previously because of Dad….

So, ‘one step at a time’ as Dad had always said…..Corri sighed, time would tell where they would go from here…..

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