...caregiving and time traveling on the front lines of love
In the first half of our eleven care giving years, time became a tapestry of care. The mother and the daughter roles intertwined and reversed so many times that I lost track who was warp and who was weave. But in the latter half, our lives were more like a quantum field where we met and exchanged particularly lovely moments. Then she was inexplicably gone again and the beautiful crone that my mother had become sat entranced with another episode of Ghost Whisperers - where the only challenge left was the moving of morsel to mouthful.
This story you are beginning is personal telling about staying alive when dealing with death. This journey is also about time traveling with my mother. In our time – our time traveling years, my mother’s visits and visitations were not bounded by a sequenced order but a quantum one. Time was personal.
As in Quantum Field theory, time is relative to your velocity between the-where-you-begin to where-you-are ‘now’. Time is relational. Without leaving her bed, she voyaged throughout her life showing me unknown bits and even inviting me to participate as her/our memories played out in ‘real time’. As we moved backward in her life and as her body moved relentlessly forward, toward the Earth (her end,) she offered me a mirror to see a new way to live in the ‘after life.’
Whatever my life is to be now, I need to parse this journey – our journey. I need to form the story – in the telling - to see it. And if I tell it well, perhaps, you - the adult-children and inner-childs left behind - may find some guidance (or tasty recipes) for your own caretaking expedition of a parent – or a lover - especially one that floats in the “long goodbye” of dementia.