Energetic bandage

Energetic bandage

Recently I was at the optician. To have Mother’s glasses repaired. She lives in a care home. In a closed ward. Because there is no other way. She no longer understands why she had to live there. Her anger about this is sometimes furious. She trots restlessly for hours along the corridor behind her walker. Looking for an exit. She wants to leave. Not only during the day, but also at night. She has lost the rhythm of day and night. Luckily she has nice pajamas. It’s sad and poignant to watch. Going to the optician with her to repair the glasses is no longer an option. So I go alone.

When I am helped, I tell them that my mother can no longer come herself to make the glasses fit. She lives in a care home, in a closed ward, you know. The employee knows all about that. She also has a mother “in rooms”. But oh well, she says, she’s still there… I say that I experience that twice. After all, the life of the elderly in care homes is not always that nice. Especially if they are no longer allowed to go outside alone. It is not so much fun for children who have to watch helplessly as their parent deteriorates. Tell me what, a man yells from the coffee table where he is waiting for his wife.

My mother hasn’t been mad at me all her life as she is now. It’s terrible, he says, and I don’t know how to deal with it. I can hardly keep it up. His sister works in a care home. That suits her well. But she can’t help him with this problem. Too close, because yes, it is your mother and not a temporary client. That does make a difference. Well, he concludes, I hope they’ve invented a pill by the time I get there. Then I’ll end it myself. This isn’t life is it? And I don’t want to put my children through this misery. A bold comment with a very deep layer, just like that on a weekday morning at the optician.

Energetic bandage

But we there in that store understand. It’s sheer impotence. Who wants such a life? For yourself or for loved ones? We are all silent for a moment… And in that one moment, a deep kinship arises between strangers. Because we are fellow sufferers in this situation. We share our concerns with each other. That gives you a sense of relief and space. We are not alone, we tell each other. That ruling seals a covenant that is made at that time. It makes us from patient companions into inspired allies. We see some hope and confidence appearing on each other’s faces again. Because of course, we’re going to keep it up.

We don’t give and we’re not going to put an end to it. Of course, we will make the best of it. Why not keep relying on better times? After all, nothing stays as it is now. And if we don’t like it anymore, there is always this moment to think back. To draw new energy and strength from it.


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