The Reversal of Roles
On good days, Bea knows exactly who I am and tells me I’m an angel to care for her.
On bad days, Bea doesn’t recognize me at all. Sometimes she mistakes me for one of her granddaughters or a health aide. It was heartbreaking the first time she asked my identity, but I have grown used to it.
The mother/daughter relationship has become blurry now that her needs require diaper changes and feeding by hand. Once, in a clearer moment, she commented on the reversal of roles and how bizarre it was. When she asks who I am, I just say in a cheerful voice, “It’s Sandy. I know you recognize me.”
Bea will repeat, “Sandy. Yes, you’re my daughter …”