I ordered the same peanut butter cup ice cream treat I have been getting Curt for the past year, but this time was different.
‘That will be $5.29,” the man at the drive-thru told me.
He had quoted the price to me numerous times since Curt entered the memory care facility last July.
But today for the FIRST time I realized this “Avalanche” that I have been buying at least once a week for Curt cost $5.29!! $5.29…who knew?
I know you are probably confused at this point……how did I not realize the cost of that “Avalanche.”
It’s simple folks……… through the chaos & busyness, I was hearing the man but not really hearing him for over a year now.
But as summer lingers on and my life FINALLY slows down a bit, I finally heard the man.
You see, I would usually roll into the ice cream place, cruise up to the drive-thru, announce to the man,
“One large peanut butter cup Avalanche, with a lid on it, in a bag….please”
He would say some price, I would get my ice cream and be on my way………….crossing another task off my lengthy mental to do list as I pulled out of the drive thru.
Getting that ice cream became another task on the ever growing list, another task, a task I needed to do, and it was now DONE. The details eluded me, but who cares because the task is DONE!! There are now 10 other new tasks to move on to!
It seems like for the last 4-5 years that is basically how I have been living. Some weeks were more crazy than others. Summer provided some relief, but I was also driving the kids all over the east coast for baseball or lacrosse and then driving to college visits.
This is my first summer in five years where I am home!
I have some free time!
I can relax some!
But here is the problem, I honestly don’t know how to relax……….
I know, you are like really Sandy?
You just chill, relax….how hard is that?!?!? Hello?!
Harder than you think, I have been task driven for so long, it’s kind of weird to have a smaller list with time to accomplish the things on it. Also time to think about ONE thing at a time and not FIVE at a time.
My brain has such trouble focusing, I am so used to moving from one thing to another constantly! I have actually tried to start a book and get about 2 pages in, and my programmed brain tries to move me onto the next task on my list.
But alas I believe I am heading in the right direction, thus my new awareness of the price of an Avalanche!
And thus my start of another new normal……….
I know it’s been long since I last updated my blog, honestly I just could not manage another “thing” on the endless “to do” list.
But finally on this second week of July I find I have some time and even renewed energy to produce some kind of blog entry!
Life has been has been a roller coaster ride for sure.
This past spring Madi graduated, which was a huge milestone. She had quite a journey with high school, as Curt was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s when she was in 8th grade. Her high school days were different from some with having her dad plodding along through the stages of Alzheimer’s, but we also worked hard to keep things real normal for her. She was involved in a ton of clubs, loved playing lacrosse, kept those grades up (4.0!) and discovered a passion for ceramics along the way.
Just need to add that this cool pottery creation is an actual working fountain.
Pretty darn proud of all her accomplishments through high school.
So proud to see her walk across the stage to receive her diploma in June.
Oh such a journey………
As for Curt, he continues to slowly slip into that depths of the black hole of Alzheimer’s. I now find myself only understanding about 20% of what he says. He is also much more tired during the day and has fallen several times as of late. It is such a brutal disease to watch someone slip into. I think so many times of how mortified Curt would be to see himself at this stage of the disease. He has lost weight and is moving so slow, he struggles to even lift his head certain days to look me in the eye…..a far cry from my athletic, agile and witty husband.
Yet through it all……it is well. I think the lyrics to this song on constant play on my iPhone seems express how I feel about the last 5 years.
Through it all, through it all
My eyes are on You
Through it all, through it all
It is well
Through it all, through it all
My eyes are on You
It is well with me
Far be it from me to not believe
Even when my eyes can’t see
And this mountain that’s in front of me
Will be thrown into the midst of the sea
So let go my soul and trust in Him
(It is Well/Bethel Music/Kristene DiMarco)
Yes folks, it is hard, I am not gonna lie and say this has been easy by any means. Its NOT! Yet………I truly can say It is Well, there is a certain contentment found when relying on the Lord and trusting Him for the future that allows me to say……It is Well. ❤
Hoping to blog more,
Congrats to Madi! She is beaituful, athletic, smart, and artistic. The future is hers. I’m glad you are getting some time these days to breathe, and hope you adjust to the extra time. Hope your summer is going well.
I remember the same time in my life, although my husband had just passed away. I was able to keep him at home, and did not have children at home. I still have trouble getting into a book – 5+ years later. I do not even know for sure if it will be 5 or 6 years this December. I also just ran on “auto pilot” during the Alzheimer’s years, just putting him and his needs first and myself second. After all this time I still feel “like I am let out of jail” when I leave the house. I think the disease forever “marks” us as it destroys the person with the disease. I am happily moving forward in my life now and have been dating a caring widower for almost 2 years now. Life can be wonderful again – but very different. His wife passed from breast cancer and that disease has “marked” him also. He cared for her for many years. Neither of us want to marry again since we are in our upper 70’s and need our own space. I am glad you now have some time for yourself again. lmohr from Joan’s (I think you have been on her site)
Lois – never say never 🙂 My mother passed away from Alzheimer’s and I felt that that Dad, in his grief, would go soon after. Several years later, though, he meet a sweet lady at his church. Neither of them felt they would ever marry again (or even wanted to) but as time went on that began to change, with the blessing of all 9 of his children and all 6 of hers, they married when he was in his mid 80s!! They are like teenagers again and we all are loving watching the joy and love they share. God is good!!
Sandy, Just the other day I was thinking about you… This summer, with Tyler being at camp, and I’m sure Madi is busy….you would have some down time. I thought about this Fall too….Tyler back to Liberty, and Madi in college too…..You definitely will have a new normal. I know we all have our struggles and challenges in this life, and God gives us the strength at the time we need it the most to get through things. Although on many days you probably don’t feel very inspirational…..you are, to me. I look at the valley of Alzheimers that you are walking through, your love and commitment to your husband, the courage you show even when it hurts, and I am touched. “When peace like a river, attendeth my way, when sorrow like sea billows roll….Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say, “It is well, it is well, with my soul.” Amen.
Always love reading an update. And I’m so glad you are getting a breather and some downtime this summer. Big hugs to you.
I have no words Sandy. I can say that when I hear the song from now on I will certainly think of you and your love for Curtis and the daily challenges you face. May the Lord bless you friend Dori
Huge congrats to your beautiful Maddie! And you know I always love to read your blog posts. I am happy that you can have some “down time” for your self this summer. I pray you continue to be strong in the Lord. You are a good role model for other women going through difficult trials. Still praying for Curt on my end, too. and remember…if you ever get back to the adks, you MUST let me know ahead of time so we can meet up.
Congratulations to your daughter! I am glad things are slowing down for you a bit – your brain will adjust soon.
It seems like Alzheimer’s has progressed so quickly with Curt. Maybe that’s the way it always progresses? I don’t know. I can only imagine how sad it would be to see a loved one go through that, but am glad to know that all is well while resting in Christ even though circumstances are not what we would have chosen.
Sandy, I love walking with you and catching up. You know I went through this twice with both of my parents, but having your spouse slip away is totally different, your rock has not been there for you for so long and you have had to be the rock for Tyler and Madi. You have no idea what impact you have had on so many people. Not only your children, but so many people in the community. We went to church today and talk about your family more than you know. We all pray for everyone in your family and hope for you the strength to continue being the great mom that you are and of course, the devoted wife to Curt. God knows how amazing you are and he will continue to give you the strength to go on. You can call, knock on my door, or tell me to come over, I’ll be there. Remember, your friends love you and will help you any way we can. Keep leaning on the Lord, girl, your faith will get you through.
So glad for the update…you have been on my mind! I continue to pray for you, for Curt, and for your family. You’re an inspiration!
Nice to finally get back on the computer and see an update sitting waiting for me to read! Congratulations to Madi! What an accomplished young lady. I hope you adjust to slowing down a bit and enjoy this summer squeezing in some things that make you happy! Continuiing to think of you all and pray for you!
Finishing up an IEP this morning and something made me realize I had not read a blog by you in some time – praying things are going as well as possible.
A GA sister in Christ