Thursday, October 23, 2008

No place like home

As I tiptoed past Grace’s room this morning, trying to get ready for work, she called to me. I went into her room to be greeted by the same litany of questions.

“Is it time to get up?”
“Why are you up so early?”
“Where are you going?”

I keep reminding her that she is retired and ‘getting up’ is at her discretion.

She wanted to lay in bed still and I assured that was a good thing to do. She then told me that she had been at a wedding yesterday so she was a little tired. I asked her how it was and she said it was a beautiful ceremony.

No wedding.. she never left the house.

Earlier this week she woke up, was helped to her favorite couch where she looked up at me in distress…”Everything is so strange..”

I’m sure it is. If you can’t remember, you can’t get your bearings. I can’t even begin to understand how disconcerting and frightening that is. We go home everyday to be in a familiar place where we can locate everything but our car keys, generally. But if you can't remember your home, there is no place to go to get that feeling. Everyplace you go is strange and new. And if you can't remember completely who the people you live with are, then you are surrounded by strangers and acquaintances.

She wants to go home. We don't know where that is. She can't remember the place she lived just before this, but it was only for a couple years. Prior to that she lived at the same house for over 40 years. She can't remember that either. My memory doesn't go back much further. I can't find home for her.

Grace talks about her parents and she misses them. I wonder if that's the home she is looking for. I'll never know for sure.

As she gets weaker and weaker, she is losing interest in life. Sleep takes her away from the confusion of her leaky brain that tricks her daily. Home is getting closer. She will get there. Then she'll be happy. Home is with God.

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