A Lack of Interest

Mom suffers from a lack of interest. Before she moved here, we know she took walks, but we often wondered what other things did she do to keep herself busy. Did she read? Did she cook? Did she call friends or relatives? We are pretty certain the answer is no. Other than walks, she probably spent most of her day sitting, or going over papers from her finances.

Ellen mentioned in one of our talks that a friend realized her parent simply sat in a chair all day, with nothing to stimulate, nothing to represent being truly alive.

We try with puzzles, games, books of poetry, short stories, but she doesn’t want to do anything.

Right now we are sitting discussing her wanting to go home. To Detroit. Where she thinks Paul lives. I try to ask questions about why she would want to go there, or where it ┬áis exactly she wants to go. She doesn’t remember she lives with us. We have this conversation about twice or three times a week. This time she mentions living with Paul, how that might be better, but then she realizes that living with him would put too big a burden on him. Then she gets disgusted (her words) with herself and I think she resigns herself to the situation she is in. Could it be a brief parting of the veil? A taste of clarity? That would be terrifying, to truly understand your plight, then be dragged back into the abyss.

When she asks these questions, like is she going home soon, it isn’t done as a question, but as a statement of fact. There is not question in her mind that she is going home soon. When we say, “you are home Mom, we discussed this and we decided you live with us,” you can see her sharpen her thoughts, and come up empty. Then resignation. Deep breaths, sighs, and reassuring words that never seem to hit home.