I found out yesterday that my Mom has less than six months to live. She is 89 and has Alzheimer's and is declining, entering a new phase of fatigue and confusion. The nursing home where she lives has called in Hospice, telling us that this is the first stage of Hospice, and that they will be there to give Mom more intensive one-on-one care during the day, which she needs now. If Mom stops eating, they won't force feed her, and if she stops drinking, they won't force fluids. They will allow nature to take its course and make Mom as comfortable as possible. My heart is heavy and sad, yet I feel oddly at peace with this news. I want to travel to RI as often as possible to be with Mom, and I want to take the best care of myself during this difficult time. The way I've always taken the best care of myself is through my creativity. Yesterday I thought about starting a creative project about my Mom - possibly a series of portraits - some done here in Maine from photos, and some done from life while I'm in RI with her. I wondered if this would be a healthy thing to do, or an obsessive, wallowing, and unhealthy thing to do? Should I delve right into my feelings? Or find a project that will help me put my mind on other things?
I've decided that I want to honor her. I have the gift of knowing that her time is limited - we knew that my dad was dying, and we had some extraordinary connections during that time. I can use this time to create about Mom, and feel all my feelings, and celebrate her wonderful life, rather than simply numb out or feel only sad. I do believe that she would want this. She's always been a fun loving spirit. So when I saw this video on-line this morning, it was all the encouragement I needed to start this venture. I will start my one-a-day mom project today, and I'll post more about it here tomorrow.