Monday, July 30, 2012

Spiced Life - Bland Days

My mom survived the pneumonia. She continues to battle in her quiet space with Alzheimer's and I hate this disease. Still. Always.

I find myself fighting off emotions of powerlessness and sorrow throughout every single day. It lives in me like a breathing, growing thing. Nameless. It keeps me awake into early cold hours, and serves strange nightmares to me that I dissect for clues in the winter's nights.

I think of my mom's empty days now - bedridden and bland in her room at frail care. She is so entirely at the mercy of carers - all overworked, underpaid and stressed. I stop short of berating myself for not being with her 24/7. I ask her forgiveness many times in a week and keep my mind in a different place than my heart to stay sane.

My gentle gardener, Lovemore, comes on Sundays and works tenderly with the Daisies along the hedge. The ones my mom loves. I stay home and do not go to visit my mom as planned - feeling sick. Physically. Emotionally.

He tells me of the spice factory of MrO where he works for R100/day - and where he is not allowed to wear a mask to work. He is Malawian and desperate enough to sort spices into small bags, but tells a story about burning peri-peri tears at night and sneezing, runny noses filled with cinnamon. And I think of the text message I got earlier to say that a tear ran from my mom's eyes. Now I have that - too - in my phone. I try to forget it. I fail repetitively.

My heart cracks a little bit more for both of them when I find myself alone - for her and the bland life she barely lives. Forgotten by so many. And for him, with the mixed spices that makes him fear for his health...

And maybe for me - with a life that I did not imagine: filled with memories of soft spices from my mom's kitchen, and her recipe books in my study but with little taste or energy left for this moment...

Tomorrow may be different.

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