*Today was the last day of the retreat. I woke up and baked some delicious Italian Breakfast Cookies, and served them with cheese and watermelon.
*For lunch we pulled out all the leftovers from the refrigerator and warmed them up for lunch. Then we said goodbye to Sherri as April and Eric drove her to the train station in Aulla. She will continue her time in Italy in Lucca.
*After lunch I went and walked around the grounds of Villa Magnolia and took some photographs. I also explored some of the garden area, known as the “secret garden”. I look forward to doing more exploration in the garden in the following week before we leave.
*The rest of Friday was very relaxing. It gave me time to think about Bill, Christy, Zoe, Paul, Everett and everyone else helping care for Mom while I am gone. I get daily updates from family members about how Mom is doing, and it really helps me to know how she is from day to day. Some of the reports are good, some are hard to read, but, true to form, Mom adds a little humor in almost every day, and I am glad my brother shares that with me and others.
*No, this is not easy being here in Italy and having Mom at home struggling as she is. There are a few of us here at Villa Magnolia who are dealing with aging parents who have some form of dementia, and it is very hard to see our parents enter into a world of confusion, fear and loss of independence.
*But it helps being surrounded by wonderful friends who ask about how things are, and support me as we support each other in all the things that each of us are going through. And that has made this time away from Mom a lot more bearable.