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This is so beautifully written and your pain is palpable. If it helps at all, I understand.


I too understand because it was a similar situation with my mother. Your words are so beautifully strung together and honor your loss.


Weeping into my coffee over here. Hugs.


What a powerfully moving tribute to love and loss. I too lost my dear Dad to that awful disease, 15 years ago. He was only 65 when he died. I was able to spend his last weekend at his side, as he would have done for me if the circumstances were reversed. He was a kind, caring man who loved a good laugh. In the midst of the awfulness, there was one moment when we did share such a laugh even though it was equal parts pain. He still knew who I was but not my age. In his mind, his children were just kids, but that didn't quite fit what he was seeing. So he asked. When I told him, he got this astonished look on his face and said "WOW! We're both old!" That was one of his charms: always able to inject a bit of humor into anything. I'll miss him til I'm gone.


It's been 13 years and 3 days since I lost my Dad. Labour Day weekend is always tough. I saw him the day before, and he knew me, knew my husband, and I heard him tell my husband to take care of "my little girl". THen we laughed about something, and I gave him a kiss before we left. I miss him each and every day.


Someday I hope that I'm a beloved enough parent that one of my daughters writes like this about me.


it's been almost 20 years since i lost my dad, and it still feels like yesterday.

so sorry for your loss.


I lost my Obachan (my grandmother, aka my second mom) in much the same way - dementia took her from us when I was ~15, but she died just days after I finished my first year of college. I miss her just as fiercely now as I did then, I don't know if you can really "get over" the loss of someone you love.


I'm sitting here crying as I read this. I lost my Dad a little more than a year ago and the circumstances were so similar. He had dementia at the end and Mom just didn't understand. She expected him to keep taking care of her just as he had all his life. I miss him so much. I can see that even after 9 years you still miss your Dad so much. I'm hoping that the pain will ease for me as time goes on.


9 years, 9 months, 9 days, 9 minutes. It's still hard and sad, and never ever easy.

Hugs to you.

Liz Cadorette

This is so gorgeously written, and I am so very sorry for your loss -- all of it. My MomMom -- my mother's grandmother -- went the same way. Thank you for sharing this.


Eleven years for me. He left on a hunting trip, and then he left our lives. A moving story, thank you for sharing.


I think I'm going to cry....


My dad's 86th BD is tomorrow. I'll give him an extra hug.


Such sadness, so clearly expressed. It's especially hard when your head understands what's going on but your heart can't bear it. How to balance the pain and the joy; how to risk the joy, knowing pain is sure to follow. Your father was blessed beyond measure to have you.


Oh, Laurie, thank you for sharing this story. I'm sitting at my desk at work all teary-eyed.


Your words are hauntingly lovely and they bring your father to life in a little way even for people like me who never knew him. Thank you for writing about him. Peace to you.


I'm sad with you...I never knew my biological father who died in WWII before I was born, but my stepfather died just about 22 years ago this month. Your words really touched me today.


Beautiful, thank you.

Caroline M

Mine died six and a half years ago. On the Monday he was fit, on Thursday he was gone. I cannot in truth say that it is any easier to lose them quickly because there can be no easy way to lose a rock and a mainstay in your life.

Thank you for sharing, I have to go and clean my face now so that my son doesn't think that I've been crying.

Cheryl S.

I'm so sorry for your loss, and the pain that remains on. I think it's so much harder to see someone deteriorate mentally than to age physically, perhaps because it's harder for us to understand. My mother is only in her mid-70's, but I see the mental confusion building rapidly, and my heart breaks.


Thank you and hugs.


There are no words, but lurking on such a post didn't feel right.


Thank you for sharing this, Laurie.

I lost my G'pa almost 4 years ago, and I was lucky enough to be there with him when he passed. You are right, though, there is no grace in it for those who stay behind. I kept telling him it was alright to go and then willing him to breathe as the space between breaths grew longer. A hummingbird came to us, mere minutes after he died, and that's when I knew everything would be okay.


I'm so sorry, Laurie...

Melissa G

The hole is always there. With my sympathy, Melissa


This is beautifully written. Thanks for sharing. I get to know people with Alzheimer's Disease when they've progressed so far as to be in the home. I love working with the people and interacting with them, but I see the pain in their family's faces, and the struggle they have with the disease. I'll think about your Pops when I'm walking the Memory Walk in October. I hope someday we find a reason, a cure.


Hugs to you my friend. A wonderfully written post!


I don't know yet how that journey will end for my parents... but the years are bearing down, and I'm sure it will be hard no matter the circumstance. Sending you lots of hugs.


I have lurked for a long while on your site, but this post has brought me to tears. My Dad didn't have Alzhiemer's, but he did have a debilitating desease that left him dependant (which he hated). I cry for all the parents/children who have experienced this.


I'm so sorry.

(formerly) no-blog-rachel

So sad and so beautifully written. Hugs to you.


Sending love...

Lee Ann

I've told you before, for many other reasons, but today I just say, for no other reason but the fact that it's true, I love you, Laurie.


It is so damned fist-pounding-on-the-wall hard that death follows life.


a big ((((hug)))) to you, my friend.

Beth S.

This is a deeply stirring account of a truly awful disease, one that I think is even harder on the survivors than it is on the victims.

Much love and sympathy to you and Mr. E.


ahh, Laurie. So very beautifully written. Alzeheimers is a wretched illness. Watching someone fade before your eyes does not ever prepare one for the actual end.
holding you close in thought.


Ah, how loss continues. Take care.


Thanks for expressing your grief so eloquently, and for letting me remember and grieve again, too. I miss my dad so much.


Laurie, you are a remarkable writer. The pain in your story is so evident, yet gentle.

It is so hard to watch those that we love succumb to this disease, isn't it? Your description of this condition is so perfect.

Many cyber hugs are sent to you from me on this hard day.


my dad died 7 years ago in june. with him, it was a stroke. i think both are equally bad. he was in there, you could see it in his eyes, but he had an awful time communicating (he was never a good speaker anyway, having grown up with a hearing impairment, but with the stroke he was unintelligible). just wish the doctors had prepared us. we had no idea how bad he was.



I am so sorry, chica. Sending you hugs and healing thoughts.

Abby Franquemont

Wow. It's been 4.5 years since my dad died, and this post... it really moved me. You're so right: no matter what, nothing prepares you for the death of a parent.


I wish I had anything smarter to say.


Thank you for sharing that. Your father must have been so proud of you.


There are no words.
I helped my grandmother take care of my grandfather in his last years. We had to keep all the doors locked because he always wanted to "go home" - even though he'd lived in that house for over 20 years.
It was hard to watch. This was the grandfather I spent summers with, who took me fishing and mushroom hunting, who let me drive the tractor even though my feet couldn't reach the pedal. He taught me how to make willow whistles and grassblade whistles, and how to whistle just like a bob-white.
It was hard to let go.

Carol Cousins-Tyler

I still remember the pain of loosing my mother to breast cancer 17 years ago, and like your pain it seems like just yesterday. Now we are waiting for our dear friend Stacey to die from leukemia. It is so hard to watch and so frustrating not to be able to do anything to make this disease go away! Thank you for your beautiful expression of Love and Loss.


What a gift your father gave you. So many are not so lucky. I live with a man now whose father who only told him what his mistakes were not that he was valued...
My father died in 1993 but I still know how special I was to him...and I am grateful for the time I had with him.


Beautiful. Thank you for sharing that story.

Peg in Kensington, California

This is so beautifully written and my heart goes out to you. I am in tears at my desk. My Dad died almost 10 years ago, but really had died 11 years before from a brain stem stroke. My kids never really knew him and in the end he just faded away. I can see my 86 year old mom start to lose some memory and she knows (as she told me) that it is going. I can also see that she gets tired pretty easily. It is hard to watch.

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