During my mom’s ten-year battle with Alzheimer’s, I put my life on hold in so many ways that I basically stopped living it altogether.
I did the absolute bare minimum that I needed to do to get by. I didn’t have the energy to do anything more than that.
At the time, it was what was required of me to survive. And I did—survive.
After my mom died, I continued on in survival mode for quite some time. It wasn’t even a conscious decision for me. It was just what I was used to.
At some point, I realized that it was no longer enough to just survive. I realized that the absence of pain and hardship was not the equivalent to happiness. I realized that just getting by was no way to live my one and only life.
I didn’t want to just get by in my life—I wanted to be an active participant in it.
I didn’t want to just be alive—I wanted to feel alive.
I didn’t want to just survive—I wanted to thrive.
I wanted more.
But there was a part of me that felt guilty for wanting more.
After all the pain and suffering my mom endured over those ten long years, how could I just pick up and move on with my life like none of it ever happened?
After all that I had lost, how could I ever pretend to be whole?
I felt like moving on meant leaving her behind. It meant separating myself from her and our experience. It meant that I was over my loss.
I eventually learned that I had it all wrong.
I would be moving on with her, with my experience, and with my loss because all of that is now a part of me. It has all brought me to this moment, this breath, this woman I am today.
So this is me, moving on.
Just accepting—what was, what is, and what will be.
Am I thriving?
Maybe not quite, but stay tuned.
Because if I’ve learned anything from what I’ve been through, it’s that life is meant for living.
*If this post resonated with you, you should check out my mentoring services for Alzheimer’s daughters.
**If you liked this post, you would love my book “When Only Love Remains: Surviving My Mom’s Battle with Early Onset Alzheimer’s.” It’s available on all Amazon marketplaces.