Making Moments, Not Memories

Recently I have been thinking a lot about memories.  Too much sometimes.  I pine over the loss of Bob’s memory and cry over the shared memories that are no longer shared.  I can really work myself up thinking about all that Bob does not remember and I feel so sad that I can’t reminisce about past events with him.

My younger sister Marti and her husband Greg recently spent a week on vacation in nearby La Jolla.  They were gracious to spend some time with us and it was wonderful to be with them.  The best part was our shared memories and experiences as family.  We laughed over things that only our family would find funny.  My mom calling the chef “Heavy R” instead of Javier.  My dad lifting his little pinky up when he drank tea or coffee. It was so great to have shared experiences and memories. I have been missing that with Bob with 1 o.

Instead of focusing on memories with Bob, I am now focusing on moments.  Making enjoyable moments for both Bob and myself is my new goal.  Whether or not he remembers these moments (and he usually does not) isn’t going to be my concern.  I want to live in the moment and make those moments count.  I want to show Bob that I love and care for him and make his moments pleasurable.  If later in the day, he doesn’t remember that we walked at the beach or had a yummy lunch at a café, I’ll know that we did, and I’ll also know that he enjoyed the moment. Bob with 1 o may not remember the specifics of our day or week but I’m confident that he’ll have an overall feeling of enjoyment!

One day this past week Bob woke up at 2 am, confused and thinking he had to be ready for family coming over.  He fretted over being late while I tried to convince him to come back to bed and get some sleep.  He got dressed and went to the family room and settled in his comfy chair.  Once he fell asleep, I was able to sleep a few more hours.  Needless to say, it was a rough start to our day.   Once it was really morning, we went to nearby Lindo Lake for a little walk and then on to the Lakeside Café for a nice breakfast on their patio.  It could have been a horrible day if I had focused on waking up early and being disrupted by his confusion.  Instead, I chose to roll with the flow knowing I could fit a nap in later in the day.  My attitude sets the tone for his attitude most times.  That was evident today.  On our drive home, Bob told me several times that today had been a really nice day!  He had forgotten that it had begun with a rough start at 2 am and so did I. What a good moment we both had!

Jeremy Camp sings  a beautiful song titled  “Keep Me in the Moment” and here’s my favorite verse:

Singing Oh Lord keep me in the moment
Help me live with my eyes wide open
‘Cause I don’t wanna miss what You have for me
Singing Oh Lord show me what matters
Throw away what I’m chasing after
‘Cause I don’t wanna miss what You have for me
Keep me in the moment
Keep me in the moment
Keep me in the moment
‘Cause I don’t wanna miss what You have for me

Yes, it will still be hard to not have the shared memories but living one day, one moment, at a time will be my focus.

July 2020 visit from sister Marti and her hubby Greg

5 thoughts on “Making Moments, Not Memories

  1. Your positive and loving attitude never ceases to amaze me. As a person living through this with my mother in law I truly appreciate and look forward to your inspiration.

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  2. Its remarkable how you’re adjusting to a difficult situation Susan. What a great thing to do, learn to focus in the moment because that is truly where we connect to one another, in the moment. Im happy you were able to share memories with family as well.

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  3. There are gifts that come with caregiving. Bob is teaching you to live in the moment. Mom is teaching me, too, because I don’t know what the day will bring so I try to enjoy the good moments when they fleetingly pass by. I rarely lived in the moment before – always planning. Now, because we are forced to, you and I are living life as it is meant to be lived – in the moment, savoring, appreciating… and grieving.

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