One Day, He Won’t Remember Me. I’ve always thought of myself as a strong woman… a chip off the ole’ block from two parents who were total troopers. Resilency defines me. Add a pinch of hope and a dose of optimism to the mix, and you have a recipe for a good life. That is until life punches you in the gut and knocks the wind right out of you.
My dad was recently diagnosed with Alzheimers, and while I didn’t need a diagnosis to know that he was slipping away, it’s a shattering reality to hear someone say it aloud. It’s painful when your mind plays tricks on you. It’s equally painful to sit by and helplessly watch it happen to a loved one. Last week, my dad didn’t recognize his only son. The stark reality hit me like a ton of bricks… one day, he won’t remember me.
It was just five years ago, that my (then) 77 yr-old dad and I were flying through trees on ziplines in the forests of Mexico. Who would’ve imagined that this hunky, blonde-hair, blue-eyed, handsome man would shrink in stature, forgetting how to do the most basic of tasks. How could I possibly have known that I would be responsible for taking away driving privileges from the very man who taught me how to drive. Painful indeed.
All I can think about now is capturing what memories I have left to create with my father… before he forgets who I am. Time is precious… and now more than ever, nothing else matters in the whole world. I’m so grateful for this lovely man, with whom I share my name (Mel), and all the silly notes on napkins we’ve exchanged between us. I am my father’s daughter… and sadly, one day very soon, he won’t remember me.