For all of you that follow Dementia-Mama-Drama & may think that I'm some kind of a saint... I gotta be totally honest. I am NOT a saint nor have I played one on TV.
There are so many levels of being a Caregiver, it's hard to explain. The best analogy for me would be having a child when you never planned on having one - but wouldn't change it if you could.
There are days I have to distance myself & think of myself first. Those days are rare, but I do have them. Those are the days when I feel the Italian/Catholic/Jewish "guilt". Sometimes I just want to run away from the entire Caregiving situation & leave it all for someone else. The problem is there isn't anyone else - only a half brother who has left it all for me. And besides, I could never not be there for Mama.
Then there are other days that remind me of when I was growing up & how Mama & I would constantly challenge each other. The roles have changed, but the dynamics & the game is still the same.
Thankfully, there are those days where I can enjoy it all for what it is & be grateful that I still have Mama. We can still laugh, sing, tell stories, make up stories & play cards. That is the part I prefer to share & focus on with all of you, to let you know there can still be good days... if you just "let go" & be in the moment.
One of Mama's favorite saints was St Jude, which is the saint of lost causes. It's ironic that Alzheimer's Disease is considered a lost cause to many... but to me it's just another part of our life. Mama's other favorite saint was St Theresa, "little flower show your power in my most needed hour". So maybe I am a Saint, just don't call me Theresa!