But I Don’t Want To Let Them Down

Last month I was in the hospital a lot.  Not for myself, but for my Old Ladies.  Not because they had covid-19 at the time, but one for sepsis and the other who was refusing to swallow.

emo & mom.jpg

Old Ladies: Aunt & Mother ca 1970’s

The Old Lady refusing to swallow was my mother who after two weeks of getting fed through a nasal gastric tube had to have a feeding tube put in.  The refusing to swallow apparently is a symptom of dementia.  The other Old Lady, my aunt, is back in the nursing home and seems to be beating the odds (this is where I knock on wood).  The nursing home where my aunt resides is reporting six deaths due to the virus, but from what I can tell from our Facetime chats, she has not succumbed to it.

IMG_1996.JPG

Xmas 2013

I am not sure how long I can keep from succumbing to a dementia of my own.  A dementia brought on by the stress of making life-changing decisions for other people on top of the guilt that has been gnawing away at me since I took over the Old Ladies’ care back in 2011.

But I don’t want to let them down.

 

There are people who I know are dead

and people I suppose are dead

and people who I fear are dead

and dead people long forgotten

and dead people who never leave

excerpted from “There Are People Who I Know Are Dead”

by Robert Hershon