We go through many stages in our life from negotiating the mine field of growing up to raising a family through to becoming grandparents and throughout that time our parents are there to guide us. I am so grateful for everything my parents did for me and there is not one day of my life that I have ever questioned their love. That to me is a beautiful and precious thing.
I am now 55 and have suffered MS for over 20 years. Whilst that has been difficult at times, It doesn’t come close to facing the difficulties and heartache of having elderly parents and feeling the hopelessness of not being able to fix their ails.
My parents separated years ago and both remarried and whilst it was bit difficult at first, we all adjusted. My mother is 84 and suffers from Parkinsons and what doesn’t seem fair is that she did everything all of her life to stay healthy. She was a yoga teacher for 40 years, never drank or smoked and always ate and prepared healthy meals. My father is 84 and suffers from dementia. He has smoked since he was 9, never exercised, ate what he liked yet he has still made it to 84 also.
I love them both dearly and want the best for them and do my best to assist wherever I can.
As my mother is partnered, I know there is someone watching over her and assisting her every day and that gives me peace of mind but my father is alone since his wife passed away almost 2 years ago. Her passing made his condition 10 times worse and he is dependent on me for the running of his life. Whilst I certainly don’t mind doing it, it is very difficult as the dementia is extremely tiring to deal with and very very repetitive. I have 4 other siblings who don’t contribute in any way and it is all left to me and my partner. Its hard at times to not become resentful of that but on the upside, I have had and continue to have the lions share of their time. This is precious to me and i find it hard to understand why they don’t have the same sense of loyalty to family that i do.
I probably sound like i am just complaining but in truth I feel very blessed and I know that when the time comes and they are no longer here with me, I will have given it my best as I know they have with me. I will be there until they draw their last breath and I consider myself lucky, not burdened.

Posted anonymously, 31st May 2020

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