Saturday, July 11, 2009

Mom and Me

Mom and I rode on the Tennessee River Gorge Explorer yesterday, and what a class act that is. It was incredibly fun. We saw gorgeous scenery, a bald eagle, blue herons galore, turtles piled up in the sun.

We went to the Big Table for dinner. It's a homey little restaurant that we love, and it's right down the road from the Terrace where she lives.

We order and take a few photos of each other.
Then it starts again. "Are you my daughter?"
"Yes, Mom! I'm Linda."
"You're Linda? Are you sure?"
"Yes, Mom, who did you think I was?" (I'm very curious about that.)

For the past two nights, around dinner time or right after dinner time, Mom can't place exactly who I am. She can believe that Aggles and I are sisters, but not that we're her daughters.

"I wish I had known you were my daughters when you were growing up!" This goes on and on. At first it was shocking and it hurt. But it's fascinating, too, and now I'm just trying to find out as much as I can about how her mind is working.

"Did you know my dog, Ling?" she'll ask.
"No, Mom. Ling died before I was born."
"He had the thickest, reddest-orange fur."
"I know! And a purple tongue."

At one point I look over and notice a little announcement on the table in a plastic frame. The Big Table will be having Sunday brunch next weekend. Aggles will be here and I bet she'll want to take Mom. I point it out to Mom. "I've got to remember to tell Aggles about it." I struggle to find a pen but can't, so I dig out my phone to type the info into it. Mom looks at the camera and pipes up: "Can't you just take a picture?"

"Mom. You're a genius." I snap the photo in one second. This is what I mean by fascinating. I always thought when one part of the mind gets dim, all the other parts go along with it. This is one of the things that makes it so hard for her to be living in the memory wing. Her memory is the worst, but other parts of her mind are sharp as a tack. Here you go, Aggles: