Wednesday, January 14, 2015

New Normal

Mom moved into her new place on Sunday. I spent the first night there with her. There are still a few boxes to unpack and things to put in place but it looks really nice and she seems to be comfortable. She'll come back to the nest every weekend. 
I was tired. More tired than I've ever been. I still am. 
I caught up on TV that Mom won't watch, haven't cooked more than scrambled eggs and best of all I read. 
I finished This is the Story of a Happy Marriage, which I had started in NC and read on the plane. It's a book of essays most of which are good reads. I think the problem for me with too many essays in a row is one of rhythm. Things start to feel the same. I feel like I'm rereading. I don't usually have that problem with Didion but I sometimes have it with McPhee. I love all three writes. I just get antsy. 
Part of the problem has been the scatter shot way I've been reading. I never really sink in. The number of ways Mom can be disruptive are legend. 
So yesterday I settled in for a lovely read and the essay I landed on was one about Patchett taking care of her grandmother in her declining years complete with a move into assisted living. Good read. But just so not what I needed to be reading at this particular moment. Or maybe it was. 
I've had friends who cared for ageing parents and parent-in-laws and I have friends who are doing that now. It's a thing. 
From Patchett.
My mother had kept my grandmother at home for 16 years. She had wanted to keep her at home until she died. But the thing about death is that you never have any idea when it's coming. I used to think all the time: if only I knew when she would die, I could pace myself. My grandmother was 92. Could I do this every day for another five months? Absolutely. Another five years? I wasn't entirely sure. 
I've been to the pool a few times, which is bliss. I have a stack of magazines to read. We are more or less at our new normal. What ever that means.