If only I could restore your health as easily as I restored this old photograph of you.
If only I could crop out Parkinson’s Disease and smooth out the creases of dementia. If only I could recreate the parts of your memory that have been torn away.
But there’s no Photoshop for aging and disease. Those are things I just can’t “fix.”
When this portrait was made, there was no thought of life as it is now, with your world so small and your options so limited. You were strong and confident and beautiful.
When I see you like that, it helps me understand your bitterness and resentment… maybe deep inside, you still see yourself as you were then.
So it’s okay if you blame me for “taking away your freedom.” Caregivers often bear the brunt of unresolved emotions and denial from the loved ones they care for. I get that.
You can push me away… you can refuse to acknowledge your need of care… you can continue to reject my efforts. I’ll still do the best I can, every day. Every night. Not perfectly, maybe, but sincerely. And with love.
Because I’m strong too. After all, I’m your daughter.