Bittersweet - After Thoughts of a Daughter-In-Law
Bittersweet is a memoir about my relationship with my mother-in-law, Martha. We were not always friends. However, through the years we developed great respect, affection, and love for each other and learned that the loving bond of friendship and family can conquer all. Even when Mom did not recognize any one in our family, she still felt there was something special binding us all together. Yes, Alzheimer’s could steal Mom’s memory, but it could not rob her of her feelings and of her family.
It is with great hope that this book serves to help other families dealing with the torment of watching a loved one progress through the stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Know you are not alone in this journey. There are others who traveled this road before you and there will be others who will follow you and in need of your understanding.
Bitter Sweet Excerpt
..... Then there were the bittersweet moments. Mom and I were looking at her pictures. I had taped the names of each family member and their relationship to Mom on the front of each picture. As time went on, this prompt was of little value. One day she asked who is that pointing to Freddie. I told her his name and that he was her grandchild. With tears she commented, “Imagine someone forgetting their own grandchild.” She was distraught.
I always identified myself to Mom when I visited. One day, I said “Hi Mom, it’s Chris.” She tried several times to say my name, but it never came out right. Then she added, “I didn’t recognize you.” I assured Mom “I recognize you and will always tell you my name, so you don’t have to worry.” “Love, that’s what I will call you. Because you are my love” was her response.
Mom had been periodically asking to go home. By this time, I don’t think she knew the meaning of home, but she just didn’t want to be where she was. Mom was very anxious one day when I visited. After sitting with her for a while, she relaxed. When I cued her I would soon need to leave, Mom asked if I would live with her. She added, “You can have my bed.” Even though Mom did not remember my visits, I always knew how important these times were to her and to her well-being. .....
Reviews of Bitter Sweet
"The added dialogue makes the story multi-dimensional one that many can relate to. Your motivation for sharing your story is clearly personal in nature. It is truly a wonderful gift to share with as many people as possible."