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  • Memories are what make us. Without them, who are we?
    When I think of my childhood, the flame haired comfort of my mother appears in my mind. I remember her smiling, laughing, always loving. My favourite thing, until I was too big to bear, was to curl up on my Mother's lap, head pressed into her chest, feeling her warmth.
    My mother of recent years has lost her carefree youth that she carried on into her 60's. Her character was always one of gentility, kindness, and mirth. Until it got her. Age. It has taken me a few years to understand it. I have tried to resolve this problem by growing angry at her, whenever she shows signs of this weakness. I have tried to tell her that she is not allowed to age. She is not allowed to change. She is not allowed to wither. To no avail. Her hearing is off, you see. And her sight is officially 'partial' but realistically, not functional. She cannot walk more than 5 steps with comfort. She does not recall me asking why she must betray me by getting so old. She forgets, you see.
    And then it dawned on me. My hips were aching and I began to walk with the sailors gait of my Mother. I saw that I was aging. It was happening to me. I imagined how I would feel in a town centre, with all its noises and smells and buzz if I saw with no clarity, heard with no clarity and could not get away from anything I feared. I would be terrified and lost. And sad. So so sad.
    She frustrates me, oh yes, still. But I have a renewed respect for this wonderful woman who remained 25 for 40 years and only gave in to 70 when she had to. I love every single second of the young woman who still shines through when she feels safe and understood. And even when those seconds diminish further, I will hold in my heart the love she has given to me, and will try with all my heart to show her the same.
    And I love the old woman. The crone. The wisdom and the senility. For this is what I must also become, and I will not let fear take away the sanctity of our shared years.
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