Finding the Rainbow Within
January 6, 2016
My life is an amazing one on so many levels.
On one hand, I have two amazing children. I know I am a little prejudice, but they are my life, and I am one proud mamma. I have a home in a nice neighborhood. I am alive and healthy. My children are healthy. My parents are still alive and help as much as they can. I have friends and neighbors who help often. I have food and electricity. I have a job I love and the start of a new career. I have a good life.
Then there is the other hand.
I have a husband with Younger Onset Alzheimer’s Disease and he is declining at a pretty quick clip. I am now a single mother and feel the weight on my shoulders daily to figure out our future and to sit close by and watch helplessly as Jim changes from a strong, confident and capable man to a person who doesn’t know his wife or children and drools all over himself.
The contrast between my two lives is stark. So much to be happy and grateful for yet so much to be heartbroken and angry about.
I must work through my mind each day the many blessings I have. I must force myself to focus on the gifts we are given by those we know and those we don’t. I make a conscience effort to remind myself and our children how very lucky we are for all that we have.
Some days this comes easier than others.
When I visit Jim and see the changes that let me know the disease is progressing, I take mental notes. I don’t comment to him. I don’t cry in front of him. I take it all in. Then I speak to the staff and I leave.
I usually make it all the way to the car before I let go.
It is there, in the privacy and quiet of my vehicle I can release the anger, the fear, the heartache. But only if the kids aren’t with me. Then I just get really quiet and try to wait until I am alone. Sometimes this doesn’t happen for a while and those feelings get pushed deep down inside of me. That is when I end up having a really, really good cry. I have to hope that it doesn’t force its way out when I am not ready or not in an appropriate setting.
No matter, eventually, all of those bottled up feelings come back out. They can’t stay in. Letting go every once in a while releases stress, releases the hurt and the bitterness.
And when I am wrapping up my pity party, my mind always turns to those things for which I am and should be thankful. The friends. The help. The love. The kindness. The memories. There is and always will be a battle between what is gone and what we still have. Looking for the rainbow in the midst of the storm brings a sunshine from within that nothing can dimmer.