Its a dilemma faced by countless families and having kept Dad at home for perhaps too long before we put him into a nursing home, I know how challenging, exhausting, exasperating it can be too look after someone who is inevitably becoming more and more dependant and helpless. Throw into it that in our experience, with the illness and dependency comes depression, dementia and a demanding nature and you've got a recipe for a not very nice time all round. There are of course lovely moments where you share with the person happiness, nice experiences and love but these do become less and less. I had all that experience in me when I was faced with the prospect that this was happening again in our family to my beloved Nan.
'By The River'
So in readiness for her impending relocation to somewhere else Nan had begun to throw out and give away, pack up and clear out. Going into her house I thought how sad it was that she had had to start this job, surely it would have been kinder that she had died without even a thought of her impending doom, let alone having to start preparing for the inevitable. She was a collector, loved auctions and antiques shops, charity shops and jumble sales and it seemed on that day to me an utter waste to ever buy anything in our lives if it all had to be gut wrenchingly sorted through and got rid of at the end. You may as well just live with a bed, a chair, fridge, cooker and toilet, one set for your whole life. She'd spent her life surrounded by all her treasures, the things that gave her happiness and now we had to decide which bits we wanted to keep and what we were going to be traitors over and chuck in the tip. Horrible.
You feel raw and numb at the same time at those moments, I wondered around her half empty home taking photos of the furniture I talked about earlier, sitting in their places but bare of all the their nic nacs. I wont put any of the photos on here as it doesn't feel right to do so, reminds me of those books of the dead that they used to have in the old days where they took photos of their dead relatives sitting in chairs dressed in their finery, very odd. Someone had wanted me to take a photo of my dad in hospital and I couldn't, not like that, not near death it didn't seem right. I talked it over with my son and he felt the same, dad would have hated that. Dad hated what that illness did to his body so why would he want anyone taking photos of it. Anyway I keep going off tract today, I'm tired and my thoughts race when I'm tired. It can prove very creative sometimes but it must be very infuriating to anyone else!