Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Melancholy Landscaping

My Mom asked me to do yard clean up at my Grandma's house. I spent sixteen hours digging up honey suckle, pulling weeds, trimming bushes and cleaning up the beds. In all I took out three truck loads of debris. These are a some photos of the finished job, I was happy with the results but it was all a bit melancholy.  

My Grandma would not let me do much other than cut the grass, while she was still living in her house. Her sense of her own mortality and that of other beings has increased in her later years. It seems that seeing other things dying even a honeysuckle plant somehow makes her own death seem closer. She is suffering from dementia, it has been hard to see such a strong willed person lose their bearings. She had lived on her own since my Grandfather passed away in 1970. My memory of her as kid was someone who never needed help but was there when we did. As her dementia has progressed she still thinks she is that person and is resistant to help. It has been challenging for my Mom and Aunt to do what is best for her while leaving her as much autonomy as possible. They moved her to a retirement home last year, they have had some tough decisions to make. I do not envy them.