During the site's grief at the passing of grundoon, I feel inadequate or perhaps like an outsider in the midst of what many of you are feeling. Despite this, I keep writing to keep myself centered as I deal with age related end-of-life issues regarding my mother. I have moved in with her temporarily, which has been a mixed blessing. Mostly a blessing.
When an elderly, active person suddenly cannot, for safety reasons, live alone; it is a delicate balancing act to become caregiver and cheerleader. I'm thankful to those of you who have encouraged me, as well as those who have not. I'm thankful for family members who help, as well as those who don't. In times of challenge and change, you learn what is truly important.
On a positive note, my mother felt up to attending Mass and so we went, in the rain and wind. I hodge-podged together a lavender long dress and purple tunic that I couldn't properly button so I covered my front with a silk butterfly scarf. Since it was barely 50 degrees, my mother thought my strappy sandals and lack of raincoat were not warm enough. To appease her, I carried a winter coat of hers. In the car, she was delighted to discover a purple umbrella she had forgotten.
We arrived early and I put the wet umbrella next to the umbrella stand since hers was a compact one. The Mass was familiar, the music uplifting, ending with Ode to Joy. On the way out, we shook the hand of the young priest from Colombia. He kissed me on the cheek and told me he had allergies and a doctor's appointment the next day. Surprised by the kiss, I said I hoped he felt better, picked up the umbrella and waited for my mother to talk with a few friends.
Heading back to the car, holding the purple umbrella over both of us, a woman ran after me and accused me of taking her umbrella. At a loss for words temporarily, I admitted it wasn't technically my umbrella, but it belonged to my mother. At home, I felt odd being thought of as a thief, then curled up under blankets for a rainy day nap, thinking I cannot fix everything. I can just be here now.