My last post was about my mother’s death on July 4. That night I was unable to sleep. The Independence Day fireworks screamed and popped throughout our suburban neighborhood, their celebratory bursts incongruous to my grieving mind. I wondered if I would ever be able to watch fireworks again without thinking of my mother’s death.
Because I couldn’t sleep, I skimmed through posts from other WordPress bloggers I follow. I happened upon the July 4, 2014, post on Baby Boomers and More, by Irene, in Redmond, Washington, a town not far from where my family members have lived off and on since 1979.
The post was titled “Nancy’s Independence Day.”
Irene’s sister-in-law died of Alzheimer’s on July 4, 2012, two years to the day before my mother. They had both lived for something over four years after being diagnosed with the disease.
Irene’s post captured the feelings I had on learning of my mother’s death. She wrote of her sister-in-law’s “liberation” from the physical and mental ravages of the disease. She wrote that though her brother would have been glad to continue his caregiving, he too could celebrate his wife’s release from Alzheimer’s.
Irene’s post gave me new words for how I felt about my mother’s death. I can now think of her as being liberated from her Alzheimer’s Disease, independent once again. Perhaps thinking in these terms will give me new joy on the Fourth of July, rather than facing the holiday with grief.
We think of the Internet as anonymous, but it can bring people together in ways unimaginable just a decade or two ago. “For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1, World English Bible)
When have you been touched by someone you know only online?