My mom has always been my hero. Cliche, right? I know, I SO know . . . but seriously, she has always been my personal hero. I’m so proud of her. She has handled so many of life’s unexpected difficulties with grace and faith that is remarkable to me. Our family is so lucky and so blessed—we have some major love for one another—but we’ve been through some shit. Some serious, awful, unexpected shit. Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1996. Shana in 2013. Both went through mastectomy surgeries, both through months of chemotherapy and both of them handled it with a strength and grace that I can only begin to fathom.
In 2009, my brilliant dad (literally, the smartest man I’ve ever known) was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia (LBD). It’s a heartbreaking, debilitating disease that’s part Parkinson’s (tremors, shaking, movement issues) and part Alzheimer’s (memory and cognition degeneration and personality changes). It’s been awful. No one knows that more than my mom. She has been my father’s caregiver since his symptoms first appeared, years before his diagnosis, (which was, unfortunately, just months after her mom passed, to whom she had been a caregiver for four years after her stroke).
As I’ve been married only 5 years this summer, I can’t even begin to imagine what it’s like for mom. I mean, this is her person, he’s the one, her “Sweet Baboo” (her favorite nickname for him as she refers to him daily). I can’t imagine what it’s like to watch your spouse, your true love change before your eyes. To become a shell of the person he once was, and to support, love and care for him Every. Step. Of. The. Way.
It hasn’t been easy, but they find joy in the little things: having a glass of wine at night while watching their favorite shows together, Friday night dates, going for walks. Date nights and walks are getting harder because dad is having a harder time keeping his balance and walking. It’s exhausting for him to just communicate at times. Sometimes it gets to be too much for my mom. Sometimes it’s just too hard and exhausting and overwhelming . . . and that’s where we come in. Mom’s support system. The times she gets to laugh with Greenlea. The phone calls she gets from Shana. The
glass of bottle of wine we share while venting about all of life’s unfairness but still thanking God for all of the blessings we have.
And that’s exactly what I think of when I think of the “Power of Us.” We all rely so heavily on one another–one of us will pick up and help carry the burden when we can’t seem to put one foot in front of the other. The power of us helps us to continue forward, focusing on all of the good when everything seems so hard. It helps us to laugh when we’re overwhelmed and just want to cry. There is power in us . . . power that would never be accessible to just one of us.
Sole Society Pasha Strappy Sandal (In cognac, but I’m kind of obsessed with the paprika color and it’s also available in a light cream . . . true to size, I’m wearing a 7.5)
Sole Society Codiie Circle Bag: Available in cognac.
Free People Long Beach Tank: My new favorite tank, available in lots of colors, super comfy, and flattering for just $20.
Free People Lace Racerback Bralette: Also a favorite, in lots of colors and super comfortable.
American Eagle Denim X Midi Short: These run small so I’d size up. I’m wearing a size 10 – usually a size 6/28.
Sole Society Phoenix Strappy Sandal in French Taupe (also in a cool yellow color)
Sole Society Roe Taupe Bag (also in cognac and black)
J. Crew Toothpick Jean in White (available in tall, regular and petite sizes, Mom wearing a 26P)
A huge thank you to Sole Society for sponsoring this post (and giving us the perfect excuse to have a little wine time). As always, all thoughts, opinions, and product selections are completely my own.