Today is the fourth day of mother's arrival at my house. If you have read previous posts, you'll know that we have built her a "granny flat" to live in, connecting just through the french doors in my livingroom.
So much anticipation of mother's arrival had kept me awake many nights. Never having to sleep away from home at mother's house again, jumping up at 4:30 am to the call of the alarm clock was something that would not be missed.
Visions of my sister and I taking mother on a long awaited beach trip when all was settled in lay hidden in the back of my mind. Many times had the Gibson family, traveled to "Crescent Beach" which was located just north of Myrtle Beach, SC. A quaint little motel called "By the Sea" equipped with cabanas for those wanting to beach watch, housed our family of 6 on many summer days. My sister had informed me that the motel was far from what I had remembered and would not be inviting to stay at any longer. I also believe that Crescent beach itself is long gone from the landscape as well, becoming "North Myrtle Beach." Nevertheless, I still dreamed of taking mother back to the beach just one last time, watching her sit in those breezy cabanas. Even though she probably wouldn't even remember being there five minutes after we had left.
Thoughts of sticking my head into mother's room to just say "hi," inviting her to go for a ride to the grocery store or to a child or grandchild's event were just some of the things I envisioned us doing. Not to mention cooking and baking for her, lots of yummy things to eat, just like she had done for me so many times in the past.
As my sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Swain might have said..."Jean, wake up and quit dreaming!" Popping my head into mother's place was indeed just a dream. With every waking hour, the creak of my french doors has startled the best of us, morning, noon and night. Thinking that you have done all you can for her and she's situated safely and contented on her old comfy love seat with snacks in hand, I rush off upstairs to do some long needed ironing. Asking my daughter a question from my bedroom, a voice comes from downstairs with a quick answer to my question. I lay down my ironing and rush down to see if it indeed was my mother who could hardly get about yet, had made it into my livingroom in that amount of time. This scenario has played out for most of the four days that she's been here. For some reason, mother's dementia won't let her understand that she lives in one space and we live in another. Her flat houses a small kitchen, living area, bedroom and bathroom, yet she insists on coming in and using our facilities.
Another dream that has come to a sudden halt, is all the cooking I wanted to do for her. Spending most of my day baking on Saturday, chicken casserole, slaw, green beans, cornbread, strawberry salad and sweet tea, some of mother's past delicacies, are pushed aside for a craving of a blt or hotdog.
My youngest daughter has been accepted to a teaching fellowship at UNC Wilmington. A trip to "the beach" is suddenly a dream come true. I will finally get my chance to take mother on that long awaited trip next week. While going for a Sunday ride around our community with my husband Bob as our chauffeur, we begin to tell mother of our plans to go check out our daughter's new graduate school located near the beach and that she would be traveling with us. "Well, have fun!" she says. "I've had enough of the beach to last me a lifetime!" were some of her laments. Dream bubble number 23 burst!
My husband and mother sit down in her "granny flat" watching old reruns of "Hee Haw" while I steel away to do some blogging. I'm not sure what kind of dream it is I'm having but I must say, I'm ready to wake up!