Pondering Thoughts Post Alzheimer’s

lynn4It’s been awhile since I last posted. There’s been a lot of pondering, wondering and lamenting, going on over the past year and a half. Not sure if it’s just another stage of working through the grief process or if it’s just me in the “what’s next” portion of life after losing a parent to Alzheimer’s disease. I think that when a parent dies, the first year is focused on the event and the void of that person in your life, not to mention all the firsts…anniversaries, birthdays, etc. A lot of thought goes to “what could I have done differently” and “if only I did this or that” or “acted this way or that way. After that, for me at least, I am thinking a lot about what the next 20 years has in store for me.

Will my life follow a different path than that of my mother’s life or a similar path? Will her dreaded diseases and afflictions be passed onto me? If so, who will be the one to look out for my well being? Those are all tough questions and they come with tough realities. Everybody is different, rightfully so, and we are all on our own journey. What will be for one, will most likely be different for another. So then, why I wonder, am I so unsettled about all of this? It seems to be the natural course of life. Maybe it’s just the natural flow of things as we get older and facing mortality. Maybe I am feeling exactly what I am supposed to be feeling at this stage of my own journey. Maybe at this age, it’s normal to be more in touch with the universe and the processes of life. How do I know…when will I know, or is it all just a crap shoot? That is the question.

Photos: (1) Lynn, me apparently pondering life at 5 years old, with crayon in hand, (2) Mom, Dad, me, Grandparents, Uncle Raymond & Marion Corso, (3) Mom and Dad on a boat, (4) Ragamuffin Lynn, me, on a tree swing at summer camp.

mom-dad-boat mom-greenwoodlakeI look back at old photos of my parents and of me when I was a kid along with other family members and it makes me feel good. Even though times were often rough back then, living in a broken home and being poor, I can look back and appreciate all the good that took place in those days as well. I can see it now very clearly now. All the times that I spent at my grandparents house, all the years that my mother had to work hard just to keep a roof over our heads and what it took to keep me fed, clothed and schooled, mostly on her own. She was getting $20 a month child support from my father who very often didn’t pay, but she was a strong lady and she made it work even with her OCD issues. It never even occurred to me back then how hard it must have been on her to have a such rowdy, tomboy daughter who managed to challenge her at every turn. The simplicity of life back then can’t compare to today’s world filled with technology, financial woes and eternal busy work leaving us no time to fully enjoy life in the now. Isn’t that what Ekhardt Tolle says in his book, The Power of Now?

Lynn-camp016Funny how we never really appreciate what we have, when we have it, in the now. It’s only when it’s gone, with no chance of returning, that we get it, really get it. Is that the same for everyone? Does everyone go through this insanity? I have to believe that we all do at some time or another, because in my opinion, we are so involved in the normalcy of life, the sameness, that a lot of times we don’t fully appreciate the moment we’re in this very minute. We need to get this or that done today, errands, busy work, just stuff in general, and in the end, it’s all insignificant stuff that we won’t even remember later on. I suppose that 20 years from now, I will be looking back at this time and at my health, hoping that I was able to fully appreciate having this blog, going to work and earning a paycheck, having a house and maintaining it, paying bills, being able to get through New York winters while fully appreciating how good that I really have it. Although I truly wish that I could afford to retire like the generations of yesterday, things could be a lot worse. I see how much worse when I watch the news every day. The world is a crazy place. Sadly, simplicity in daily life has long been lost in the past.

Moving forward though…what’s the answer, how do I proceed? Should I simply go with the flow and see where it takes me? Or should I try to work it out creatively, meaning to get involved in some of the creative projects that I have put off for lack of time, energy or inspiration? In the end, I suppose it’s my choice and my unique journey, so I’ll keep thinking, wondering and pondering until it leads me to where I am supposed to be. Hopefully, I’ll know that place when it comes or maybe it will be an unconscious awakening, but regardless I’ll have faith that I’m on the right path.

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