My life, somehow, warped into a version of that old Bill Murray movie, Groundhog Day. The repetitious nature of my daily routine varies slightly from one day to the next. Usually, the sequence of events remains constant. I don’t know if it’s age or disease that requires my mother to follow a strict regimen as her day progresses. All I know is that I’m trapped in a similar scenario that alters in miniscule ways throughout the week, meshing the hours one into the other. If I didn’t cross a huge X on the calendar to mark off dates, I wouldn’t have proof that time passed. Like Phil, I relive events with slight differences and hope fervently that escape comes with the next buzz of the alarm clock. Like Phil, perhaps my new life will lead me to a better appreciation of life if I can simply learn the right combination of compassion and humor. Some days, I find myself sniping at anyone within range. Some days, I use my writing to open an escape hatch and sneak me out of my reality. Some days, though, the routine offers me a chance to examine my role as a daughter. I’m humbled by the courage my mother musters each morning because she needs assistance now in so many ways. Logic tells me that the predictability of each hour allows Mom to focus her energy where she needs it. If I’m lucky, at the end I’ll be a stronger and better person for surviving the monotony and repetition.
Copyright 2011 Elizabeth Abrams Chapman