Thursday, July 21, 2011

Rounding Corners

Still a slowly decreasing spiral of energy. 

My mother's blood pressure has been getting lower and lower all day, by small increments. 

The nurses are no longer giving her blood pressure regulating medicines, but they are now giving her medications to dry the fluids and secretions in her throat so she's not moaning. As she couldn't swallow she was making sounds to try and clear it.

She's mostly unconscious now, and when she does surface she's looking through us to different place or time.

I've made up the sofa again.  Another night by her bed. 

Maybe the last night, maybe not.

Middle son and youngest son came by for a few hours this afternoon. 

We clandestinely shared a bottle of wine (sadly she couldn't have any) and had a little "cocktail party" in the room with her. We laughed and remembered favorite stories that she loved.


Today I was bombarded with odd snippets of travel memory, from places I'd lived and become familiar enough with to find my way around.  My personal version "google maps",  ah, the things you do when sitting quietly for hours on end...

- Remembering the way and mentally going from my grandmother's house in Brussels - when I was 9 - to the bakery, to the greengrocers, to the butcher (we went to the one further away because his meat was better). 

- Wandering back again to my favorite Kro (restaurant) outside of Copenhagen where we lived in 1997, that my mother had so enjoyed, near Rungstead Kyst where T and I lived for a couple of years.

- Taking a shortcut (in the late 70's) to the Plaza from my mother's second house in Santa Fe. 

- Making my way again to Kusadasi in Turkey (1994 -ish) where I met my mom and Joe on the cruise ship and took them on a tour of bird island and had a great lunch on the quai.

- Figuring out getting around in Albuquerque in the spring of 2001 when my mother was hospitalized there for three weeks. Eventually it turned out to be a godsend when four years later, I had to know my way around as T needed eye surgery in Albuquerque and we spent the whole of the week between Christmas and New Year of 2004, going back and forth from the residence hotel to the hospital for follow up appointments.

- Getting to work from the little cottage on the lake where my mother and I lived after I graduated from High School...

So many more places and memories of my mother and I, like moving snapshots in a mental album.


  1. We are told that hearing is the last thing to go before the end. How lovely for your mother to have had family around her, sharing wine and memories. You are making her final days on earth the absolute best anyone could do It takes stamina...but it's so worth it.

    Sending you love as always Jes
    Linda xxx

  2. I love these tales of memories shared with your mother. My mother is in a home with dementia but my brother is here today and I will try and start a similar conversation. So positive compared to the usual dementia talk.

    I hope some of your thoughts are of the lovely welcome home you will have in Corfu and be able to sit peacefully in your favourite place.....

  3. My very dear Jes xxx
    Remember Autumn in Santa Fe and ABQ and the smell of fire-roasted Hatch chili peppers? Red or green? Mine was always a 25 pound sack of green, then I would take them home and freeze them individually on flat trays, then dump them together, to pull out one by one, rinse under the hot tap and slip off the skin. Posole memories.
    I will sit with you virtually and share that wine. You are so blessed to be able to spend time with your Mother now, before she departs for her long voyage.
    I send you love, hugs, blessings and quiches.
    Kitty xxx <3



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