You Can’t Control Your Situation, But You Can Control How You Choose to Deal with It

For years I struggled to accept my mom’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis.

I knew she had Alzheimer’s. I wasn’t debating that. But I kept expecting her to be the same person she had always been—the same mom I had always known.

Whenever she behaved differently or forgot how to do something, I would get upset, disappointed, and even angry—with her, with myself, and with the whole situation.

I spent a lot of time feeling sorry for myself and just wishing things would go back to the way they were. I felt like there was no point in even trying because my mom could no longer be the mom I wanted her to be. And our relationship would never be the way I always dreamed it would be when I became an adult. We would never have the friendship I’d always yearned for.

Over time, I realized that I had been going about it all wrong.

Instead of expecting my mom to be who she had always been, I should have been accepting her for who she had become. Instead of focusing on everything I had lost, I should have been focusing on everything I still had. And instead of feeling sorry for myself, I should have been feeling empathy for my mom.

I spent a long time stubbornly resisting my new reality because I didn’t want it to be my new reality. I didn’t want my mom to have Alzheimer’s. I didn’t want this to be my life. I didn’t want to give in and accept what was happening because I didn’t want it to be happening in the first place. I just wanted it to change.

I eventually realized that my situation wasn’t going to change. My mom’s Alzheimer’s wasn’t just going to magically go away. My life would never go back to the way it was. I had no control over any of that.

But I had full control over how I chose to deal with the situation. I had full control over how I chose to show up for my mom. I could either sit around and waste her life away feeling sorry for myself or I could accept what was happening—even though I didn’t like it—and make the most out of the rest of her life.

I chose the latter.

And I hope you do, too.

Nothing about it is easy, but I promise it’s absolutely worth it.

You can’t control your situation, but you can control how you choose to deal with it.

2 thoughts on “You Can’t Control Your Situation, But You Can Control How You Choose to Deal with It

  1. I just found your Podcast and Blog and just finished reading this latest blog. I am so glad I found you. My mom, who is 75, was diagnosed three years ago, but has had symptoms for about five years or longer. Everything you just said in this blog is exactly what I have been feeling. We moved my parents closer to us last year, after not having lived in the same city with them for over 25 years. Not only am I adjusting to having my parents live 20 minutes way from us, which is a mixed bag, but I am also helping my dad care for my mom, and what that entails. Thanks for all of this and I will be keeping up with your blog on a regular basis.

    1. Thank you so much! I’m so sorry to hear about your mom. I totally understand what you are going through and all of the mixed emotions.

      I also wrote two books about my story, “Learning to Weather the Storm: A Story of Life, Love, and Alzheimer’s” and “When Only Love Remains: Surviving My Mom’s Battle with Early Onset Alzheimer’s.” Both are available on Amazon. You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram at Life, Love, and Alzheimer’s.

Leave a Reply