February 16, 2022
Note: it took me three starts to correctly type the date. Oh my! Ever since learning to type in high school, I’ve not needed to look at the keys. Yet another sign of increasing dementia.
The winter days pass slowly. Until this winter, I would have bundled up and taken my walks down our lane and enjoyed the blanked earth lying quietly under the snow. But this winter, I don’t have sufficient energy to do so. I am not sure if this is part of my dementia, Alzheimer’s, or simply aging; likely it’s all three. I again replay in my head Mom’s motto for aging: “You have to be tough to get old.” But lately that isn’t working so well for me; not nearly as well as it did for her.
Every part of my body seems to be sluggish and worn, wearing and weighing me down like a heavy coat: tight and restricting. I feel squished, confined, and restrained.
At some point during the day, I look at the clock and silently groan at how many hours are still left before it is time to go to bed, to rest my body and mind, to sleep and dream—even as my dreams are often disturbing, jumbled, and other-worldly.
But alas, it is just Wednesday, only the middle of the week. “A new week,” I say to myself, as if I have concurred or accomplished something significant to get here. But truly I have no significant goals to achieve, other than writing a post or sending a message to my family.
Perhaps today I will challenge myself to a jigsaw puzzle. Or maybe not. Perhaps I will walk the treadmill and pretend I am strengthening my sagging muscles. Or maybe not. I could go for a walk as the temperature has risen above freezing, but I talk myself out of doing so, as it seemed to take too much energy to bundle up and walk under the weight of heavy coats, hats and boots.
If I had sufficient thoughts and ideas, I would write all day long—because I love to write. But that seems such an unrealistic and challenging task. Besides, I would forget details, dates, and would also be challenged to stick to a theme.
Instead, I’m trying to think about my Estonian family, who are expecting another child. A boy child! Of course, I won’t see him, other than in pictures. Nor will I be able to inhale the unique sweet baby smell of this newborn. I will not be able to rock, cuddle, or hold his tiny, perfect hands, or touch his feet and smooth his soft hair. I won’t experience the joy of rocking him as he tries to keep his sleepy eyes from closing, or soothing him when he is upset.
But I will settle for pictures and posts and screen time.
And I shall be happy.