Monday, June 14, 2010


Today is one of those days where I spend hours, not actually with her, but behind the scenes, taking care of Mom: making phone calls, talking to doctors, paying her bills, and arranging for services.
I am sorting through another armful of "important papers" when I find a stack of bank statements from 2008 to now.

Something must have happened to Mom in April 2008, as her check writing and her banking, her financial ledger all go to pieces. The handwriting on her checks is a mess.

I remember that spring, seeing a notice from the bank for bounced checks. I remember asking if she was all right, did she need any help with her checkbook. I remember her telling me she was fine and to keep my nose out of her business. If I had only known.

Now I have before me, bank statements from the past three years. They are a testament to my Mother's dementia. This bank still sends an image of the canceled checks, so I can see her handwriting, and other things she writes on her checks.

The year is wrong on most checks. 20009, 200, 2000, 200 (with the 1 squeezed between the zeros or as a superscript above them.)
She signs her nickname not her full name.
She writes little notes on the edge, "I lost my envelop."
She wrote on one memo line
MEMO: I think --- ???

You've gotta laugh or you're gonna cry.

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