|With Canada AM Producer Jessica|
As I sat with her I could see her struggling to open her eyes. It seemed an almost impossible task. I called Davie and Dad and we sang to her. I could have sworn I saw the corners of her mouth turn upward, hinting at a smile. I kissed her and told her I loved her, and took a selfie of us - because everyone should have a photo to mark their birthday. And I left. I had a final exam to write and the clock was ticking.
I wrote the exam and was filled with a sense of accomplishment. Bravo to Carlo and Sara and Rebecca - for they are the support team behind the scenes that enables me to go to school, and work, and keep it together. They are my rocks. It really does take a family to raise a mom - and I am blessed with a great one.
And now in the 2 days I have before Semester 2 begins, I have taken a trip down memory lane, back to a time when it took a complete family to try and raise our mother from sinking into the abyss of Alzheimers Disease.
I was contacted just over a week ago by a producer for Canada AM - a national morning show. They are presenting a week-long series on Alzheimer's Disease and I was invited to share the story of our journey, along with other families and people touched by AD.
So, today, I went over to the Bell Media Studios thinking that I would have a pleasant interview and be on my way. Everyone was very nice, although I must say it is a little disconcerting to stand in a darkened studio, look into a camera and answer questions. But that wasn't what got me. As I recounted our story, I could feel a lump rising in my throat, and my heart began to race. It was as though 13 years had fallen to the wayside and I was reliving the moments of discovering something was wrong with my mother all over again.
Sounds melodramatic, I know, and as I had to stop and take a minute - yes, people really do that - I was yelling at myself in my head: "Naomi, this is old news! Get it together! Why is this story, of the bookkeeper quitting in a temper tantrum because your mother couldn't understand her instructions, why is this story making you cry?!" I don't know that I can answer that for you now, except to say that the wounds of the long goodbye are raw, and they never quite heal over. It's like a persistent cut, you think it's healed and then some slight movement and it's open and bleeding again.
I miss my mother, and when I go beyond the intellectual, and allow myself to feel the loss and sorrow that accompanies the long goodbye, I realize that I am still that girl who needs her mom, only now I can only enjoy the comfort of her embrace in my dreams and memories.
I don't know how the interview piece will turn out (I can only hope I don't appear like a blubbering, babbling fool), but I invite you all to tune into Bell Media/CTV's Canada AM every morning next week, when they will air the special on Alzheimer's. The piece I participated in will be airing on Thursday January 22nd, 2015, during the Town Hall.
Until next time, which I hope will not be the end of Semester 2 (!!), I wish you all a wonderful week filled with family, fun, friends and fantastic food. B'Tayavon and Buon Appetito.