Where Are You?
“911 Operator, what is the nature of your emergency?”
“I want to speak to my mother, but I can’t find her.”
“Ma’am, what is your name?”
“My name is Brenda. I’m home alone and don’t know where she is.”
“Where is your family? Is there anyone close by?”
“My mother was here. I think she was sleeping in the other room, but she left without telling me where she was going. Can you call her to come get me?”
“Who should I call, ma’am. Do you have other family?”
“Call my son. He’ll know what to do. But, he’s not here either. He lives in Maryland. Tell him to come get me.”
“I’ll do that, ma’am. Can you remember his number . . . ?”
So went the conversation my mother had with the 911 Operator recently. Somehow, she finally remembered my cell number, and the worried operator called to let me know she was confused.
Fortunately, she’s still in a rehab facility following surgery to repair her broken hip from a fall last week. For most of the day she’s there by herself, except for the occasional visitor. We’re bringing her back home to Maryland soon, but these things take time. Although time is not in great quantity for my mother, pool soul.
These days, she is rarely the personality I used to know. Dementia has taken her away in stages. It started out slowly at first, but her mind has deteriorated with alarming speed these past several months.
Sometimes I catch glimpses of the mother I used to know, but those moments are getting fewer. One day she’s still my mom telling me what to do and giving me advice. Other times, her fragile mind is lost in another world and she’s a little girl again, in search of her own mother. Is this the best she can hope for in her declining years – perhaps, months?
How do you say goodbye to someone who doesn’t even know they’re going away?
Has anyone seen my mother?
Is she all right?
If she ever comes back, please tell her I love her.
Terry Adcock © 2022