Category: elderly

Blessed Are Those Who Grieve

It has been three and a half years since my mother passed away. A few weeks ago my father wanted to visit my mother’s grave. In the first year after she passed, I had tried several times to get him to go. His way… Continue Reading “Blessed Are Those Who Grieve”

Blessed are the Advocates

Blessed are the advocates and the whistle-blowers for their shaky-kneed courage. They shall hear the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” A week or two ago, a friend posted an urgent prayer request. She had reported an abusive situation and was summoned to… Continue Reading “Blessed are the Advocates”

Update on Dad

I realize that I sidestep the issue all the time, dancing around, skirting the elephant in the room. It’s far easier to talk about the brindle boxer that is about to be euthanized than it is to talk about my father. “How’s your father… Continue Reading “Update on Dad”

The Lucky One

I was sitting at the train station in Charleston, South Carolina. The evening was a balmy 60-something — balmy in comparison with the 30-something I left behind in New York that morning. The station was clean, well-lit, and sparsely populated. I sat on a… Continue Reading “The Lucky One”


When I first laid eyes on Joseph Zupnik three and a half years ago, he was late for the Family Council meeting at my mother’s nursing home, Focus Otsego. “LATE!” I jotted into my little notebook. Not a good first impression. He walked in… Continue Reading “Guilty”

Buried Gold

It’s been a rough few days… make that weeks. My father has been struggling with anxiety. Anxiety and dementia go hand-in-hand. The world doesn’t make sense. Memories jumble around. People telescope in and out. Switchbacks define the landscape. “DON’T GO THROUGH THAT DOOR!” he… Continue Reading “Buried Gold”

Y is for Young

In March 2011, I wrote the following post. ┬áIt’s a sweet story — and a reminder. I took it out of storage and dusted it off for today. A number of years ago, I was able to accompany my father on his trip to… Continue Reading “Y is for Young”


Laurel said the other day, “We should all learn another language. As a family, you know?” “Why?” I asked. “Well, then if we’re someplace all together and we want to say to something to someone in the family but we don’t really want everyone… Continue Reading “Shouting”

At the Corner

At the corner of Grove and Spring Streets, I paused. Maggie dropped her fish and panted while I stepped back to survey the building from a different angle. It’s a lovely setting surrounded by trees. Porches and patios invite the residents to enjoy the… Continue Reading “At the Corner”

Barefoot Girl

“Oh, I see you’re a barefoot girl this morning,” my father said, looking at my feet. I was indeed barefoot, as is often the case when I’m still in my pajamas. “A barefoot girl with shoes on,” he continued, smiling as he said it.… Continue Reading “Barefoot Girl”