It is a gift from God to have my mother here with me. My entire focus has changed to clear my days in order to have time with her. It's not just about being with her, but also taking care of things she needs assistance with and teaching her new things to be able to function and live better.
My mother was one of the seniors who stayed at home since the lockdown began in March 2020. She rarely went out and did not really socialize to any degree except for immediate family. As an elderly person, I could see the effects of the lack of movement for these 2 years and listened with interest to understand what aches and pains. I wanted to understand what the effects of being house bound did to her physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Being careful with her, we began to engage in walking, allowing her to set the pace and distance. Thankfully, her naturally fast walking pace did not diminish, but the distance did initially. I observed her behaviour towards movement. She was never a lover of exercise in any form except dancing. What I began to see was my mother reacting like a bird who was truly free. She looked forward to walking and being outside every day. In the mornings, right outside of our building there's a seniors' exercise program that lasts for almost an hour. When she saw them, she jumped right in and participated. I'm very proud of her for making adjustments to wake up at 5:30 am to be able to attend the program, trying with all of her might to do the movements and get through the full length of it. It's easy to see which muscles are weak and strong. She is now able to walk up to 3 km leisurely.
Being with her made me think about her friends and all of the seniors who might have been neglected, are still in lockdown or are too afraid to go out. My prayer is that they will be able to move and socialize again safely and experience the beauty that life has to offer.
Now I am focusing on teaching her how to improve her use of technology. There are things that she would like to do but does not know how to do such as creating a Google document, voice type and scan a document. She's taken on learning Portuguese as she's realized it will help her to converse with the people around her and travel with more ease. This is beginning to look like from lockdown to unstoppable. I'm amazed at her verve for life.