Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Mardi Gras!

I'm still here and she's still there.

Tuesday was Mardi Gras, and that meant there was an opportunity for the Activities Department to celebrate! A CD filled the room with the upbeat jazzy sounds of New Orleans. Purple, green, and gold paper masks were held in place with a thin string of elastic, hiding the residents faces from the nose up. They had cut outs for the eyes and jester-style hats. Necklaces made of colored beads and monochrome fish were draped around everyone's necks.

The Activities Director (AD) made her way around the room encouraging everyone to dance. It's a great form of exercise and I know that Mom usually participates in other dancing activities. That's no surprise since she has always loved to dance from the time she was square dancing as a teen. I remember her teaching me the "Alley Cat" and "Bunny Hop" in our living room when I was growing up.

As the AD approached us, I asked Mother Dear if she wanted to dance. The AD took my cue and took hold of Mom's hands and got her to stand. They started dancing and the AD would lift Mom's arms and twirl under.

I watched her. Light on her feet, yet her legs lacked coordination and showed signs of their age. It was her eyes that told the whole story of her current state. Open and staring ahead. Vacant. The body was moving from something basic in her brain, but the mind wasn't, her conscious mind gone.

I left the building, got in the car, and wept.


Mom said...

At moments like these the only appropriate reaction is weeping.

Latane Barton said...

Oh how very sad. I think of you going through what I have already been through. It's so tough. Hang in there and cry if you need to. It helps cleanse the soul.

karen said...

I am so sorry. Mom hasn't relized it was a holiday in yrs. I do know how you feel. Crying is one of my daily routines these days. Thinking of you both.

citygirl said...

This reminds me of a picture my local paper took of my mom. It was a story on her home and showed her sitting in the background while other residents danced. She was sitting staring straight ahead, vacant. This picture made me so sad. I'm sorry you're there now. It's a very hard stage.