Hard Makes Us Human

I try to keep this little blog of mine happy whenever I can, but sometimes this place gets a little gritty.  Sometimes, like today, I struggle with which parts of my life I should share.  A big reason that I have been avoiding this place is because there is a big part of my life that I wouldn’t call happy.

I’ve mentioned it before, my grandmother has Alzheimer’s.  And it’s hard.

It’s hard for my grandmother.
Its hard for her to not be able to express herself the way she once did.
It’s hard for her to control her emotions.
It’s hard for her to cope with the frustration that comes with the challenges of the every day.

It’s hard for my grandfather.  
It’s hard for him to understand her.
It’s hard for him to keep his patience when she is having a terrible day.
It’s hard for him to manage both of their lives.

It’s hard for my family.
It’s hard to be around her on bad days.
It’s hard to recognize her even on the good days.
It’s hard to see who she’s become.

It’s hard for me.
It’s hard to have things to say, but know she won’t understand.
It’s hard to take the unintentional outbursts.
It’s hard for me to find the patience that love requires.

Some nights it’s hard to sleep.  Some days it’s hard to concentrate.  Sometimes I worry I am going to snap.  Sometimes, its easy to pretend everything is fine and forget that life used to be different.  Sometimes, I cry.

I try to remind myself that we all face hardships.  There are so many people that have to cope with disease.  And this isn’t even my disease. I know someday this “hardship” will turn into a loss and that helps me to appreciate the good time I have with her and forgive the bad.  Some bad is easier to let go of than the rest.

Its so easy to get bogged down by the negative, the unanswered questions, the fears and the mistakes.  I think the silver lining to all this is that I have a greater appreciation for all the wonderful things that are going on in my life right now.

I feel so lucky to have incredibly supportive friends- most of which, if you had asked me 5 years ago who my support team would be, they wouldn’t have been on the list.  Life has a wonderful way of surprising you like that- bringing you the people you need at the times you need them most.  Relationships with family members that once felt strained have developed into a strong bond. Also, I feel confident that I am where I am suppose to be.

I think it’s okay for things to be hard.  I think hard makes us stronger.  I think hard makes us more vulnerable.  I think hard makes us human.

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