Sunday, April 21, 2013

                                                     Catherine's 90th Bithday




Saturday was Catherine's 90th birthday party. It was such a blessing to have her still with us to celebrate this event. She has led such a full life, it is so hard to see her fading so rapidly. Alzheimer's is a cruel disease.

Family came from in-state and out-of-state to share in this wonderful event. It was so nice to see family that we haven't seen in so long. It was so very special that all the family came together for this blessed event. We even had Drew on Skype from England to wish everyone a wonderful day and of course, a Happy Birthday to his grandmother, Catherine. Technology is wonderful, when you can pass around a cell phone and see him, hear him and have him see and hear us back, it was so nice to "have him there" with us. No one was too sure if Catherine understood what was going on but she certainly enjoyed the marvelous cake from Oakmont Bakery! She grabbed the spoon and wasn't about to let anyone have that cake! I don't blame her, it was delectable!

Kathleen and Pat put together a wonderful luncheon and party. The food was all delicious and they even prepared special things for the Vegans in our family. Everything was perfect. Thank you both for taking the time to put together such a beautiful family gathering!

Catherine was excited to put on the "pearls" I gave her. She always loves to wear her pearls. I think I have taken four different strands of "faux pearls" to the home over the years she has been there. She is always sad when they disappear. I try my best to keep her stocked up!

When I took her to her room after the party I asked if she wanted me to take off her pearls before she laid down. She quickly replied "No! I will sleep in them so no one steals them". She asked if the silver jewelry box was still there and I told her it was on her night stand. It is the precious times like that which allow us to know parts of her memory are still with us. She remembered the gift.

My previous weekend visit with her alone was so endearing. We held hands the entire time and she took me back to the years when her mother and siblings were alive and she climbed trees and swam across the Allegheny River on a daily basis. She was quite the tom-boy! I love those glimpses into her past and being able to become whomever she thinks I am at that moment and enjoy them with her as though they were actually happening. It is the visits such as that which make it difficult to leave her. I always try to stay long enough to tuck her into bed and kiss her goodnight so that the last memories are the most precious.

Thank you to all my friends and family who have been so supportive during our long and difficult journey. It certainly takes a lot out of you at times, however those special times make it all worthwhile.

Happy 90th Birthday Catherine!

~Linda