I moved to Bloomington, Illinois in late 2007 to provide daily care to my housebound parents at Mother’s request and to enable them to spend the last years of their life together in their own home. Father could barely walk across the room, but he still drove. Mother suffered dementia to such a degree that she simply sat without eating, drinking, or taking her blood pressure and heart medications. She would try to walk across the room and pass out midway. They also forgot to let their two elderly Labrador dogs out into the backyard on a regular basis with predictable consequences. Mother also needed diapers. I got all that sorted with diligent rules, home cooking, doctor appointments, and my full attention. When Mother said “I should end it, I can’t even think.” I realized I would have to try harder to create happiness for our sad little family of three (both siblings having absconded with everything they could grab). I celebrated every holiday on the calendar by cooking old family recipes, providing novelty items like party favors, hats, noise makers, and whatever else might be fun. I also painted Mother’s Dogs from photos I took of her dogs laying at her feet. This made everyone happy. We went on this way for the next five years
Caption: Mother’s Dogs-oil painting, 24” x 18” by Annmarie Throckmorton, 2008.
Caption: Locomotive Coming Out Of The Mountain
oil painting for my father, 24” x 18” by Annmarie Throckmorton, circa 1996.