It’s been a very long time since you’ve heard from me, and I’m sorry for that. At first, life was just too busy to worry about writing a newsletter. But then the thought of writing this particular newsletter became overwhelming, as if putting it in writing made it more real. But this is my reality.
My mother has Alzheimer’s Disease. She was diagnosed with it several years ago in the very early stages. We were able to have many difficult conversations as a family because my mother’s mind was still that…hers. She surrendered her driver’s license on her own and we were all committed to making the best of her life while we could.
After that, we just went on living. Mom’s disease was slow moving. She would occasionally forget things or repeat herself, but overall, she was still the best mom and grandma that ever walked the planet.
And then last summer happened. Mom’s Alzheimer’s had progressed, and we were seeing and dealing with a lot more hallucinations and confusion. But it wasn’t until my mother had a couple of hospital stays that the disease began its rapid decent.
And that, my dear reader, is when I stopped working. As a writer, a mom, a wife, and a daughter, I have always struggled with balancing everything (What mom doesn’t?) But when my mother’s health took a drastic turn and my parents needed more help, I couldn’t do it all. One thing had to give, and that thing was my career.
It’s been a rough 8 months, and to be honest, it’s still rough, even with Mom in a full-time facility. I visit her nearly every day, and that not only takes me from my work physically, it takes me from it emotionally.
When a loved one dies, you mourn. You never quite get over the loss, but slowly, over time, somehow God helps you find a new normal in life.
When your loved one has Alzheimer’s, you mourn as well, but in a different way. You see, Mom is still here with us. But in many ways she isn’t. Her body is here, but her mind, her memories, everything intangible that makes her my mother, is mostly gone. I find myself mourning the loss of my mother, and then I chastise myself because she isn’t actually gone. And I am truly grateful for the time I still have with her. Even if it doesn’t really feel like her most of the time.
But can I just say…God is still so good. I am reminded daily of the blessings he has given me, especially the blessing of being raised by a Godly woman who loved me unconditionally. I know not everyone can say that. And even though walking the path of Alzheimer’s with my mother has been a rough road, and I am exhausted and emotionally drained so much of the time, I am so thankful that I still get to tell her how much I love her, and when I do, somewhere down deep inside of her, the part of her that is still Mom always smiles and says “I love you, too.” And that’s the best gift God could give me right now.
So I just wanted to reach out and let you know why you haven’t heard from me and why I haven’t published Book 4 yet. And I also wanted to thank you for sticking with me, despite the delay. Book 4 is coming, I promise. I’ve been working when I can find the time, so I am hoping that very soon I will be able to get it to my editor. And I really think you are going to love it.