“la vita è brute

My mother does not say much since her dementia continues to progress. As I wheel her around the rehabilitation facility she says something. Loud. Clearly. In her native language.

“la vita è brute.”

Loosely translated, “life is horrific.”

I think my mother has always felt this way. Whether she was young and forced to give up school to learn a trade. To when she married my father who did not dance with her on their wedding day. Now today.

I agree with my mother. Life has been horrific for her.

I was too selfish to see that when I was in my 20’s. Even my 30’s. As I lean towards my late 40’s my mother needs me, and I am selfishly not there. I cemented my life in a small but vibrant city 3 hours away. Married a gentle and smart man. Worked my way up at a non-profit to manage some programming. And now my mother needs me. Really needs me to just survive. Eat. Shower. Go to the bathroom. And I have abandon her. Again.

I can make up all the excuses in my head or aloud of why I cannot quit my job. Why I cannot come to see her more than every 2 weeks. Why I just don’t quit my job and live with my parents to care for her. My husband understands. I believe him when he tells me to think about it.

I am thinking about it. I really am.

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i am a first generation italian-american who grew up in southern new jersey. Life is amazingly beautiful and devastating. Sometimes in the same day.

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adriana suriano

adriana suriano

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i am a first generation italian-american who grew up in southern new jersey. Life is amazingly beautiful and devastating. Sometimes in the same day.