I’ve written about my mother many times.
She was an enigma, the entire time I knew her. She was cool, gathered, quiet and definite. She was tailored and streamlined, her blouse always pressed and her seams straight. She was careful and spare. Her entire presence was like a cool cloth on a fevered brow. I will never know anyone as gentle as my mother.
When my mother died at the age of 84, she had Alzheimer’s. She had stopped cooking, golfing and talking. She stacked cans of beans and hash in the pantry and then decorated the towers with Christmas bows. And then she stopped walking. She kissed my father’s hands the night before she died but she had forgotten everything else about her life.
So fifteen years after she died, I am walking in the local Alzheimer’s Walk to raise money for research and care. I have no idea what took me so long to do this simple thing – of showing up, claiming her and her Alzheimer’s Disease, doing something to make things better for people like her and me and us. All of us. We all know someone who has been hurt by this awful disease.
If there’s a walk in your town, sign up.
Everyone deserves to remember the life they lived.