Thank you for the thoughtful comments on several of the latest posts. I want to respond here to some of them, like speaking to your elderly mother (or getting there) and asking her questions. If your mother responds with interest, it is as much for her as for you to learn more. Of course if it makes her anxious or she can’t remember things and feels pressured, that won’t serve her. But when one is moving into that last stage, taking an interest in their life also gives them a chance to digest and integrate their experience.
Your interest in her is a great invitation to her to do this reflection. Sometimes asking and listening is the greatest act of kindness we can offer. We become so attentive to one’s physical needs, we forget how to make our loved ones emotionally and spiritually comfortable.
By the way, it’s also ok if she adlibs, fills in some of the story pieces in response to “how would you have liked it to turn out?” or “tell me the story the way you would most like to remember it.” Some people need to look at the painful times, others need to focus on what makes them happy. There is no rule for which is better, only to be receptive and trust she will let you know what she needs.
Thanks for bringing in this reminder of those who are still with us, but who have stories to tell and memories to digest.