Friday, August 26, 2011

Betty... My Mom.

Today, August 26th, is my mom's birthday.  My mom is named Betty Jo although many now call her BJ for short.  She's an amazing woman.  Kind-hearted, generous, gracious, Jesus-loving, sweet, fabulous are just a few of the numerous adjectives that describe my mom.  I'm so blessed to have her as my mother.  She's my friend and confidant.  Happy Birthday, mom!  Psst... I won't reveal your age, mom.  Although, I think if a woman ever lies about her age, she should add a few years.  So, if you're turning 30, let's say, then tell people you're 37.  People will be dying to know your beauty trade secrets!  By the way, I'm 37.  Wink, wink.

So, tomorrow, my mom, sister and I will be participating in the Walk To End Alzheimer's in Tulsa, Oklahoma at the Oral Roberts University campus.  This will be our first year to participate and our small team of four raised a good amount of money for the Alzheimer's Association in a short amount of time.  We're participating in the 5K in honor of my my mom's mother, Sylvia Kelly.  We affectionately called her "Granny."  Last night, I wrote a note on Facebook entitled "Whose 'Betty' Are You?"  It's a little something written about my mom and my Granny.  I thought I'd share it with you.  So, without further ado...

"Whose 'Betty' Are You?"

This Saturday, I'll be participating in the Walk To End Alzheimer's.  My sister, mom and I have been raising money for the Alzheimer's Association.  This is a very personal endeavor as my Granny (my mom's mother), Sylvia Kelly, was a victim of this horrid disease.  It was devastating to see her slip away and to witness her mental capacity diminish.  My mom was her caretaker for three years.  It was hard work.  It was exhausting.  It was emotionally draining.  My Granny had completely forgotten who we were.  My Granny didn't even recognize her own daughter.  This realization was especially difficult for my mom.  However, my mom was determined to give my Granny the best possible care.

My Granny had broken her hip and of course needed to stay off of it in order for her hip to properly heal.  However, my Granny would forget about her broken hip, get up to walk and of course then fall.  The doctor informed my mom that it was necessary for my Granny to be restrained.  It was a gut-wrenching decision as my mom hated to have to restrain my Granny.  My Granny would cry and plead with my mom to untie her.  "What did I do wrong?  Why are you doing this to me?"  Those words pierced my mom's heart.  It was heart breaking because my Granny simply didn't understand.  Or rather she would just forget the reasoning.  My mom couldn't have my Granny breaking or fracturing any other bones and as tough as this decision was, it was imperative for my Granny's overall health and safety.

One day my Granny was having a particular rough time.  I remember her looking at my mom.  My Granny clearly said, "Please call my daughter Betty.  I know she will come and get me.  She will take care of me."  There was silence and an obvious lump in my mom's throat.  Gosh, even as I write this, I'm getting the same lump in my throat.  My Granny was riddled with Alzheimer's and she didn't recognize that her caretaker was in fact her daughter Betty.  It was a bittersweet moment.  My mom was proud to know that even in such a dark mental state, my Granny knew who she could depend on.  My Granny knew who would be the one to take care of her.  It was just sad that my Granny didn't realize that her Betty had in deed come through for her after-all.

So, my question to you, is "Whose 'Betty' Are You?"  Who knows that you're their champion?  Who knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that you're the one who'll be there for them?  "Whose 'Betty' Are You?"

Happy Blogging,
Toni The Chic Momma

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