Prayer request for my family today

I am sorry to have been scarce around here lately.  My mother, who has advanced Alzheimer’s, enters a nursing home today, and frankly it is hard to think straight. I haven’t written about it because I don’t know what to say. We are very grateful to have a relatively good place for her, and I’m very grateful to my siblings and especially my brother Joe for working so hard to make that happen. I would appreciate prayers for our whole family. Thank you!

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22 thoughts on “Prayer request for my family today”

  1. My father had early-onset Alzheimer’s, with symptoms beginning in his 5o’s, and one of the hardest days of my life was the day my mother and some of their closest friends took my father to be admitted to the nursing home. My mother thought it would be easier (for her) if I didn’t come, but I found I simply couldn’t sit still at home, even to pray. I went to a bookstore and walked around and ended up reading an entire book by Dave Barry (may God bless him).

    The other hardest day of my life was the day my father had gone missing and I had to drive all around the neighborhood looking for him, absolutely sick with fear. A friend who was helping us found him just when we were about to call the police.

    The dementia of a loved one is a cross like no other. I will pray for your family.

  2. My dear Simcha – We have been walking the same path. My late FIL suffered from this, and now my MIL is in the same situation. She is not angry and frustrated, as some with Alzheimer’s and dementia get. She is just remote, childlike, and solitary, the exact opposite of her real personality.

    This is one of the many times when having a large, loving family is a real blessing. My MIL is in a very nice facility, having graduated from independent and assisted living. My husband has 4 lovely sisters, and between them, their spouses and us, Ruth is seldom alone. One of us is with her almost every day.

    Unlike my own family, full of divas, personalities, and temperamental meltdowns, my husband and his sisters are stoic, practical, and loving German-Americans. They are all a great blessing. One handles the finances/bills, one sees to her personal supplies and needs, and the rest of us visit a couple of days weekly. We always help each other when the burden is too much or if one of us needs to be away, one of us always fills in without complaint.

    I hope you are rewarded by sudden flashes of the mother you have loved all your life. It happens sometimes when you least expect it and most need it. On Christmas Day, Ruth called my husband by his name, which had not happened for a couple of years (at that point, she thought he was her brother. Since then, she does not know him at all.) He is holding onto that memory.

    God bless you all. – Susan, ofs

  3. When I visited nursing homes when I was younger, I always thought they were such sad places. But that was mostly because the patients were lonely and rarely received visitors. I know that won’t be the case with your mother. And (not to be flippant), the bright side of Alzheimer’s is that every visit is new. My father-in-law had Alzheimer’s and, you indeed, don’t know what to think. One minute, you are laughing at some bizarre, but endearing behavior; the next, you are crying at the loss of so much familiar connection. I many ways, Alzheimer’s is a shared cross like no other. May God bless you abundantly in your suffering.

  4. I feel like all of us who continue to benefit from her lifetime of kindnesses and hard work owe some extra prayers.

  5. I’ll continue to pray for your mother. She is one of my favorite people I’ve never met. I really wish I had met her when I was first raising my children. How did she raise a family of good Catholic writers? I am grateful to her.

  6. Would that be you’re brother Joe a.k.a. Steve Gershom? It sounds like maybe he’s as awesome in real life as he seems on his blog. Prayers and best wishes for your mom.

  7. Oh Simcha,
    That’s so tough. I’ll pray! My MIL was just released from the home she was in, but she wanted to stay! She gave the poor workers there a lot of hell, and fought with her room mates until they put her in her own room (she likes watching telenovelas lol) but she really enjoyed hanging out and socializing in the meeting area. When I visited, someone was playing the piano. Nobody looked sad at all. I was really impressed at how beautiful the place was, and it’s state run. On that note, I should say that last year after brain surgery, she was in another state run facility and it wasn’t half as nice. It was like night and day. She found out about the good one by asking around.

    It really does take the wind out of the sails to see your once, larger than life parent reduced to the state of a child. It can happen so quickly. My father went from climbing ladders onto the roof, and trimming hedges, to being like a child. I’ve thought about it a lot. I don’t think it’s just one more thing that sucks about original sin, I think God is working in a mysterious way with the soul of the person who is going through it, and everyone around him or her that is forced to bear it, and consider their own mortality.

    My own parents “protected” us from some hard truths. I don’t think it was a good idea.

    As heartbreaking as it was, I’m glad my children experienced it. It made a huge impression on them. It was very humbling to witness.

  8. Prayers for you all. It was super-hard on my mom and her siblings when that became the only viable option for my grandma. But she did have good care, and at least one family member visited every day, plus we developed enough relationships with other people on her floor that we’ve continued visits, in some cases weekly, even after grandma’s death a year ago. It is wrenching though, even if it’s clear that that’s where God is putting you.

  9. Praying for this situation, May Our Lady of Tenderness console you all, and may the whole communion of Saints soothe her spirit by prayer. Ask her guardian angel to be watchful, and others to be patient. Love you. Clare

  10. I’m sorry to hear this, Simcha. We had to make this same decision just a few months ago. It is hard. It’s a such a mean disease. I’ll keep you and your family in my prayers.

  11. I am so sorry, Simcha. How heartbreaking. I will keep your family in prayer. Please take care of yourself.

  12. Praying with you Simcha. My mother-in-law died this week after a long dementia related illness. We were set against using an ALF but learned that it really was a good option for her and for us.

  13. God bless you all. Yes, it’s so so hard, even when you know it’s the best path for your mom. Prayers and more prayers! And hugs.

  14. Prayers…we just did this with my mother in law. Harder than expected on my husband, and God bless my sister in law who lives closer an therefore bears the brunt of it all.

  15. Of course Simcha and really, you don’t need to say anything. Prayers for all of you and your dear mother.

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