Climbing on the bus Not looking forward to this trip But it meant so much to her And how could I predict
That it would be her last hurrah Before she passed away Just one year ago marks The anniversary of that day
It was an annual trip, with her twin They took to different cities With a group of old church folks They called themselves “The Traveling Gypsies”
As it turned out to be My last fond memory Of my mother and her twin Before they were stripped Of all their memories
Alzheimer’s was their reward They gave it quite a fight Bed ridden in their final days Until they saw the light
Who's to say how it will end Or where that place will be A gutter in the streets of life Or home where it should be
So as I sit and contemplate These moments I recount I think about the road ahead And how I’ll make it count
My mom and her twin sister both had Alzheimer's. My mom was significantly more progressed than my aunt's. My aunt acted as my mom's caretaker long after we had them both moved to a memory care facility. They both did well there for about 6 months. Then my mom became aggressively depressed and crying all the time. At that time, they both had a bad sinus infection at the same time. My mother recovered but was still crying and complaining she couldn't breathe. However doctors could not find any ailments in her. My aunt ended up getting pneumonia. While in the hospital they discovered and diagnosed her with stage 4 terminal lung cancer. She died 4 months later with the last month being bed ridden, hardly eating until she was nearly only bones and on a breathing machine. My mom and her twin were always connected in the weird twin way ... knowing things between them, beyond normal comprehension. We all believe my mom knew (not in a cognitive way but in her own twin way) before diagnosed that her twin was going to die. None of us expected her to live much longer than her twin. They both had long life forces even crippled with cancer and Alzheimer's. My aunt Lorea (other mother) died Oct. 27, 2016. Up until that point my mother could still walk, talk, eat and recognize me and my siblings. However after she lost her twin she could no longer walk requiring much more individual care. We moved her to a residential home care facility. They worked really hard to try and revive her willingness to live. It wasn't a conscious choice to give up because with Alzheimer's your brain doesn't work right. She lasted less than 3 months after the death of her twin. It was heartbreaking, to say the least, to witness. I rejoice her being reunited with her twin and my father and free of the confinement of Alzheimer's but I'm still working through the finality of it on the earthly side. Growing up as a child of twins is a blessing of having two moms (one being the cool mom ... the mom you could tell anything to .. knowing she would know how to explain it to your real mom in a way you couldn't bring yourself to do) and a sister cousin, my aunt's daughter. I had an older sister (10 years) too. So in my case I had three moms I love dearly. I am grateful to still have my sister.