Thursday, 17 March 2016


My Mom has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. It's early stage; so far she is exhibiting only short term forgetfulness, not memory loss per se. Once she is reminded of something, she often recalls it completely. It just slips away in the moment. Other times it doesn't come back, it's gone and truly forgotten.

Yesterday was a great example of where she is at. When she went to the neurologist on Tuesday, she and I had a talk afterwards. We discussed the diagnosis and she assured me she was happy and not overly concerned about things. She even laughed as we made a couple of rather tasteless Alzheimer jokes. Then she called me again on Wednesday, completely forgetting that she had told me about her diagnosis on Tuesday. When I reminded her, she laughed and said "I'm going to have a lot of fun with this."

In that moment, with that statement and laugh, I realized how fortunate I have been to have my Mom. It is from her I learned to find humour in life, to see things as they are and laugh at them. It is from her I learned how to move past things, move onward, move forward, regardless of what is going one around you. It is from her that I learned how to live with ALS.

I won't leave my Dad out of this either. He was a determined man, unwilling to give up in life. I get it from both sides. The difference is that my Dad saw the irony and cruelty in things. My Mom sees the oddity and humour in things. I seem to have learned from both of them. I am able to see the irony in life, but I prefer to see the humour.

My Mom will have a good time with this. For as long as she can, she will laugh and see how funny life is, how situations that could be taken with sadness can also be seen lightheartedly, how it is better to keep going with a laugh than to give up in tears. It's not that either of us is immune to the sadness. It's just that I, from my Mom, have learned how to keep it in perspective.

1 comment:

  1. What a touching tribute to your Mom and her spirit!