Friday, July 27, 2012

Photos, memories, mothers and time - never enough

Over the last few months, I have been noticing my step mother has been suffering from short-term memory loss.  She will, in fact, ask me the same questions several times over the course of a ten minute phone call.  She writes lists of things she has to get done and then forgets where the list is or even that she already wrote it.  She does not remember if she paid her taxes this year.  This loving woman has been my mother since I was a little girl, so my attachment to her is strong and deep. 

Just months ago we were talking about books, her customers, being a mother, and what activities she has planned.  These days she cries during most of my calls, she is frightened of driving at night, tells me repeatedly that she loves me and is fearful I will take offense at something she says or does and stop loving her.

I call her multiple times a week since we live several states apart, and I can seldom visit her. 

She asked me quite recently to create a photo album of my daughter since her birth to the present.  At first I thought of this as a task that would be quite time consuming especially since I have sent her pictures over the years, and she could build such an album herself.  But in the last few months, she has admitted to having problems remembering things.  I am beginning to think that what she was asking for was something to keep her from forgetting her granddaughter. 

So now I am busy building that life album for her.  I hope it is enough to help her hold onto a granddaughter she loves.  The journey ahead looks particularly uncertain, my time with her off kilter and short.

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