Skip to main content

Her new home - PV

Since my parents wedding day they have lived together in a house on Rivercrest Drive. That changed Monday when my mom was moved into Presbyterian Village. I have had a vast array of emotions this week as I have tried to wrap my mind around what my dad must feel every night he goes to bed alone. I try to put myself in his place, even as much as I am hurting, but I can't imagine his loss. Twenty-five years of memories in a home, and you are forced to move your wife somewhere else for reasons you can't control. And, yet, his strength and dedication should be admired by every married man.

Mom had no trouble adjusting to life in the nursing home. It is almost as if she never knew anything changed. The lenient visiting hours have been so much better (on our family) at least. My dad is able to see her right before she goes to bed at night, and sees her at different times through the day. I think my mom has had more visitors than anyone else on her floor! She was always a social butterfly! My aunt has been able to fix her hair and put makeup on her, of course! She also has some cute new outfits I bought her before I left Little Rock and can wear jewelry in the nursing home. All of this helps her look more like the mom we knew at Thanksgiving. 

A little over a week ago, when I was still in LR, we became concerned about my mom's vision. It became increasingly evident that she was not seeing in the way you and I do. She was no longer making eye contact, she became scared to walk (she would almost immediately try to sit down on the ground if we tried to get her to walk), and she didn't respond to movement in front of her face. Traditionally, with Alzheimer's patients, sensory organs can shut down and though they may function correctly, the brain can't interpret the input. In other words, there may be nothing wrong with her eyes, but they are not communicating correctly with her brain. A type of "blindness" sometimes common in Alzheimer's patients is called Motion Blindness: Visual perception is intact in other ways and a person with motion blindness is therefore able to perceive color and form, for example, as accurately as a normally sighted person. However, they are unable to see motion and instead are only able to gauge movement in frames rather than as a fluid process. In a particular example the subject's stroke caused lesions to the middle temporal area (area MT or V5) in both sides of the brain, just above the ear. This condition makes it difficult to do simple things such as cross the street, or pour a cup of coffee.[1] [2] It has been suggested that the ability to see motion is crucial for survival.[3] This condition has been associated with Alzheimer's disease. It is possible that Alzheimer's patients lose their bearings and become lost not due to a memory problem, but perhaps as a result of this condition. It may therefore be that a person's failing ability to detect motion accurately could give doctors a way to detect Alzheimer's disease in its earliest stages.[4] [5] [6]

I went to counseling this week. The biggest question on my mind lately has been, "So how am I supposed to live the next 3-6 months (or however long she may live) knowing my mom is going to die?" Do I start to mourn the loss now? Do I act like I have not been given a time limit? How in the world do you handle something like this? Her advice was to take it one day at a time. Asking God to teach me something new everyday, to learn to depend on Him for something different everyday, etc. I also need to focus on what I do know about God - His character, love, etc., rather than allowing myself to focus on what I might not understand about Him - why He allows people to suffer. 

For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 2 Corinthians 4: 17-18


  1. Oh, Mare I cry almost every time I read your blog. May He bless you and keep you.


Post a Comment

Past Posts

Mary Grace

At 2:00 am this morning, our sweet Mary Grace was welcomed to Heaven. We found out this afternoon that she had a large brain hemorrhage. Reid and I spent three precious hours holding our daughter tonight. The nurses wrapped a pink bow around her little head and we swaddled her in a soft pink elephant blanket. During those hours, we told Mary Grace how proud we were of her fight, how she fulfilled our dreams of one day having a daughter to call "Gracie," and we even took a little nap, snuggled together as a family. If we told her we loved her once, we told her a thousand times. We prayed over her and gave her back to the Lord. We miss her more than words can say. I feel like we were punched in the stomach today and left with the wind knocked out of our lungs. Its so hard to understand "why?" in all of this. Tonight when we left the hospital, Reid turned on this song by David Crowder Band and we listened to it on repeat the whole way home. Its the exact state of our

One day at a time

For the first time in my life I feel like I'm truly living one day at a time. Reid and I had a pretty good day yesterday. We were able to sleep in which was wonderful. Reid made us lunch and we sat outside in the backyard. It was a beautiful day and being outside did a lot of good for my mental health. :) There were still a lot of hard moments as memories from the night before would come rushing back to mind. We miss our sweet babies so much. Olivia had a good day yesterday. It was uneventful (which is a very good thing in the NICU) and they were able to turn down some of her medicine. We call every morning to check on our sweet girl and her nurse was quick to tell us how feisty our daughter is. We picked up on that in her first day of life, but it was funny to hear that someone else had observed the same. We are so in love with our feisty little Olivia. After we left the hospital, Reid and I went on a dinner date. It was so good for us to get out and feel like we

Madelyn Barrett

I really don't even know where to begin or how to write this post. I've put it off for several days hoping that maybe if I let things sink in a little more it would be easy. This will never be easy. As you know, we welcomed three beautiful little girls into the world on Friday afternoon. We had hoped to continue to "buy time" and hold off on delivery for several more weeks. God has always had a plan much bigger than either Reid or I could ever imagine. I have to chose to believe, everyday, that somehow this all fits perfectly into that plan. We knew from the time of her delivery that Madelyn was struggling the most. The circumstances surrounding her birth caused a lot of trauma to her tiny body. After a day of fighting for a positive outcome, the neonatologist came to visit with us and told us it was time to let her go. Late Saturday night we went to the NICU to hold our precious baby for the first and last time. She was absolutely perfect and looked just like h

Family of Four

If all continues to go well we will be headed home from the hospital tomorrow. I got a little stir crazy this afternoon and walking the halls just wasn't going to cut it so I went down to the gift shop to browse a bit. It feels so good to actually feel good after surgery. I also feel pretty rested and I'm very ready to settle into our new normal at home. My dad and Ann have been taking care of Olivia and have been such a tremendous help to us. Reid's parents were in town until this afternoon and Olivia got to spend some time with them yesterday. She's been very well taken care of by all her grandparents and I'm pretty sure she hasn't thought twice about us. Out of sight, out of mind. She has had a cough for a few days so Reid took her to the doctor this morning. Sure enough the cough is just allergy related but sweet girl has her first ear infection. The good news is that she hasn't run a fever and was able to get antibiotics to treat it. For all the change


God has blessed our family with quite a surprise! Olivia is getting a little brother or sister in early December. We are thrilled! As of today I am nine weeks along. We went to the doctor several weeks ago and were able to see the tiny bundle and hear the heartbeat. Everything looks great and we are so thankful! I'll share more details in the next few weeks. :)