I remember when you and dad were building the dealership. Money was tight, and sometimes, at the end of a long work day, our family would then deliver a car to the new owners in another town. If the delivery were more than sixty miles away, it would be late at night, so David and I might have been in our pajamas and robes, ready for bed. David would ride with Dad in the car to be delivered, and I would be with you in the car that we all rode in together for the return trip home. The guys often listened to the radio. You and I often played a story-telling game, where one of us made up several titles, and the other chose one title and made up a little story to go with it.
We also played word games. My favorite was this: we decided on a topic, and then we took turns giving examples. For instance, one topic was “Things that are scary,” and some of our examples were when the lights go out in a storm, when you go into the kitchen at night and a mouse runs in front of you, when you’re playing hide and seek and no one comes after you, etc. I remember that the funny thing about the scary topic was that by the time we were finished, we were making crazy noises and laughing.
You might not remember those rides and our games, Mom, but I do. If we were playing the word game now, the topic might be “Things we lose.” Tangible examples could be lose your gloves, sunglasses, keys, homework, etc. Emotional, intangible examples could be lose your temper or your patience or sense of humor, lose hope or faith or trust or love, or on a more current, personal level…lose your memory.
Here are some quotes on loss that I also think apply to dementia and Alzheimer’s:
“Not all who wander are lost.” ~J.R.R. Tolkien
“Always look at what you have left. Don’t look at what you have lost.” ~Robtert Schuller
“Lost causes are the only ones worth fighting for.” ~Clarence Darrow
…and by Daniel Boone: “I have never been lost, but I will admit to being confused for several weeks.”
My favorite, most poignant quote on loss and love (which I’ve used before on the blog) is by G.K. Chesterton: “The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost.” Dementia and Alzheimer’s are not the only risks in life; all of us live one day at a time, and as you and Dad used to say, we should be grateful for each day and live it to the fullest.
You were our example, Mom, and we all love you. Marylin