'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

MenoSundays; Life Lived Lovingly

I sit and gaze out the window at the wind-harassed trees. Flurries of snow - few and shortlived - batter the glass. Deep pondering. About Ageing. About disease in that process which robs a once vital personality of its drive. Of the lack of will to make things better for oneself.

Being strong-willed is fine if it is driven towards the positive. It becomes destructive if it is used to defend oneself against any form of change or to take actions which might mean having to be self-aware, self-honest and risk letting go of behaviours that are resulting in poor hygiene, poor diet and weakened mood. Knowing that with some training and discipline it would be possible to find joy in life again and to restart some spark, that the strength of will could facilitate that, yet rejecting that as a possibility simply because one 'doesn't like training and discipline'... well...

Watching one's parents deteriorate (as I know a few of you understand well) is not a fun pastime.  Having 'those' conversations, broaching subjects you know are being deliberately avoided, is not for the faint-hearted. One must oneself have a strength of will and self-understanding that is not coloured by emotion or blackened by angst and frustration at the recalcitrance. A thicker skin needs to be developed to deal with the anger which is reflected back at any suggestion of ways to make life easier/better/ less straining. Does one withdraw and let them fester, as it seems is their desire? Does one wade in boots and all and state the facts, laying open the options? Neither of these seems right. Treading the line between them feels like setting sail upon hurricane-pushed seas.

In those times where silence falls and irritability itches, one must simply rest back into the shell of Love which was nourished by that same parent and is now deserved by them.

Leave it for now. Await the next opportunity...



  1. I am glad it will be my sister who will take the lead on these conversations as everyone knows, while I can make hard decisions and talk about hard things, my compassion button in busted.

  2. Well said and truly and 100% understood. I have been there as you know. Daddy was a proud and stubborn man....born in 1929. When I was young I often heard mama say talking to him was like a brick wall...I grew to fully understand that.
    YaYa this is with a capital L 'ovingly' written. Bless your my friend and hugs x 87

  3. I understand completely. My mother died young. We had to face these types of difficult discussions once already, when we convinced my father to leave his home of many years and come live close to my brother and me. Of course, that does not mean that there are not still very difficult conversations needed. I try to respect my father's dignity and intellect while laying out my truth.

    A sentence near the end struck me as the most empathetic: "In those times where silence falls and irritability itches, one must simply rest back into the shell of Love which was nourished by that same parent and is now deserved by them.". Well said. I will remember that.

  4. We too were struck by that same sentence as KB. We has to go through this situation with hubby's father who had Alzheimer's. A very difficult time. We both tell each other now that we hope we will be more cooperative when that day arrives for our children.

  5. Understood here too, as I think you know.

  6. It was always understood that my grandmother would go into a home, as it had happened with her mother. But when the time came and she was already suffering from Alzheimer's, her mindset was quite different. She did move though and was okay there. My parents are quite open and frank about those things and they know they start having limitations. They are only 'young' though: 69 and 73!

  7. since I only have a brother and no sisters, it fell to me to HANDLE all of this and it is not an easy thing to do. I have no idea why as people age they decide they no longer want to bathe. I think Daddy's parkinsons and dementia were the cause of that. no matter the cause it was horrible. we just have to remember all the things we do for them they did for us when we were small.

  8. I understand this stage in life, as you know.
    I remember fighting with dad to eat his veggies. Finally, I realized that I only wanted to keep him happy. I remember hubby arguing with the dietician, who didn't think he should have eggs every morning fro breakfast, due to cholesterol. He had a brain tumour, dementia, and was unable to walk, or use the bathroom.
    I stopped controlling his food, and worried about hygiene. He refused to take a shower for two weeks, in the retirement home. He was a man who had a bath every afternoon. It was no wonder.
    I finally found a new bottom line, of keeping him safe, and trying to make him laugh as much as we could.
    It really is difficult. I understand.

  9. Hard times all around. Dealing with the slide into the darkness of Alzheimer and dementia brought we sisters closer together. May it do the same for your and all the Macs. namaste, janice xx


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