Tag Archives: traveling with older parents

June27, 2015

Ive been delaying watching the movie Still Alice.  I’ve been advised by my friends not to watch it yet.  It was on the que on the way from Orlando to Germany…I avoided it.  Yesterday, at our farewell dinner of our tour, a lovely lady named Alice actually, brought up the movie, quietly, to me.  My mom heard a bit of the conversation and joined in singing the praises of the movie etc.  Obviously , there is so much irony in this as their wasn’t a knowledge as to why this came up.  Also, she was glad to be included in the conversation about a movie she enjoyed.

Spring forward one day.

I watched the movie. Ugh.  So many tears on an airplane.  Gratefully, I’m sitting in the seat directly behind my mom, so she couldn’t see me bawling like a baby.  I’m sure the 2 people next to me think I’m either highly emotional or on my period!  Highly emotional yes.  Period…private.  Anyway.  Wow, that’s all I can think or say.  Wow.  It’s too huge to deal with.  Especially now, on an airplane.  It resonates with my in a big way though especially after the trip we just took.  A lot makes sense, other parts totally haven’t happened.  But wow.  Oh my Gosh.  I feel heartbroken for the future event of some future person.  I can see it.  It is out there still, but I can see it.  I’ve struggled with some of these situations over the last 2 weeks.  The constant questions, repetitive  questions, lack of memory, lack of understanding, empathy, and awareness.  As well as a lack of understanding social cues in public situations.

I can’t and won’t let it ruin our time, but the reality of it makes me so sad.  Grateful to be going home.

June 25, 2015

La Sagrada Familia Barcelona Spain Gaudi
La Sagrada Familia Barcelona Spain Gaudi

Today has been a good day.  Much better than yesterday-grateful to say.  We hung out last night with our new friends Beth and Tisha.  We walked down to Las Ramblas, downtown Barcelona, Spain,  and had dinner and drinks.  Oh my Lord… I have at least one drink with every meal except breakfast.  Jeez… Time to detox!!! I’m going to say though, I love the experiential nature of this country.  Here in Spain, Portugal and France.  They slow down, enjoy each other, enjoy a bottle of wine together.  They eat beautiful food made out of fresh ingredients. They don’t cook with or eat a lot of sauces or condiments.  It’s beautiful.  The whole experience.  We made our way home from a gorgeous dinner of tapas, and paella.  This morning we ate (not me…still stuffed from last night) then got on our tour bus.  We toured the city and went on a tour of La Sagrada Familia.  It took my breath away.  The whole exterior is covered in the story of Jesus’ life. Gaudi wanted everyone to get something out of the building even if they weren’t catholic, of religious.  When you walk in  you are bathed in sunlight from the gorgeous stained glass windows.  The cool colors are a statement on Jesus’ life.  That’s on one side of the building.  On the other side the stained glass is all in reds and oranges and yellows, and that is the story of the passion -His death.  No straight lines on the pillars.  The pillars look like trees. We were told by our guide, that the reason the pillars look like trees was because if you ask a Buddhist where to find God or enlightenment they would tell you in the forest under a tree, if you ask a Christian where to find God or Enlightenment, they would tell you in the temple.  This is a forest in the temple, so it can appeal to every one of any religion.  It was extraordinary!  My favorite place of worship to date.

Mom and I finished our shopping, we walked… and walked… and walked…, then grabbed a taxi back.  Funny enough, we are staying at a beautiful hotel, Porta Fira.  Our room is on the 15th floor.  Our room number is the same as my home address…1515.  Funny!  I miss home.  I miss my husband and my kids.  I’ve had the opportunity to FaceTime them a few times.  It’s great to see their faces.    My mom has really missed my dad.  I’m grateful for that.  He has missed her also.  He cried one time telling me how grateful he was that she and I were doing this.  He said “she sounds so happy.  You’ve made her life with this trip.  Thank you.”  It was very sweet and touching.  But they are ready to be back together.  Mom asks about him everyday.  She talks in her sleep most of the time, and many times she talks

about her dog and to my dad.    She was excited to bring him things she thinks he’ll enjoy.  It’s lovely.  It offers me perspective that even when they are angry with one another, or when my dad deals with her totally different from how I do or would, there is still lots of love and care there.  That is reassuring.  Anyway.  We are resting a bit prior to going to dinner and to see a flamenco dance.  Should be fun.

One more day, and this adventure wraps up.  We head back to Orlando from Frankfurt, Germany.  I look forward to seeing my family.

It’s been great though!

Faith Based Journey – one day away!

Well, I picked up my mom Friday from her home in Ft. Myers.  It was a long day! I was in my car approximately 10 hours that day, as it rained in various areas, there was tons of road construction, and there were so many accidents!  The Bonus though is that I picked up my mom, helped her pack for our trip, collected all her necessary items and medications…and then we were off!  We are now in Deland, and we are getting ready to leave tomorrow.  We went yesterday to get her ready to go with a Mani/Pedi, and a few smelly items from Bath and Body Works.  We grabbed lattes and magazines at Barnes and Noble, and hung out with my girls.  It was a great day!  Today, we are doing final laundry, packing, enjoying time with family, and doing all our last minute preparations for tomorrows journey.  I feel blessed. I am super grateful that I have a wonderful and self-sufficient family that is able to part with their Momma and wife for the next 12 days.  While I am gone, my amazing husband Mark, will be getting our son Baylor to RYLA(a Rotary Youth Leadership Conference) in Jacksonville, Fl. for a week, getting my 10 year old Maya to and from Gymnastics 3 times a week, and getting my 13 year old Grace to and from volleyball conditioning daily for two hour segments, not including the meal making, the friend get togethers, the managing of our 5 (yes 5) animals 2 dogs, 2 cats, and 1 hamster.  He is amazing for facilitating this trip for my mom and myself.  It takes a wonderful and strong man to sort of “allow” (forgive the term)something like this to organically exist, and grow into what it has become.  This trip is the trip of a life time for my mom and myself, and I am glad we get to do it now, while we are both in well enough health, and mental clarity.  This is a dream come true for us both.  I wish that every child has the opportunity to do something of this nature with their parent.  What a blessing.