While They're Still Here: A Memoir
I was the Make Love Not War daughter most unlikely to care for my aging I Like Ike parents, until the call came, upending priorities and roles. Suddenly the caregiver, the parent’s parent, nurse and financial adviser, I knew I was unqualified for each title. Dodging the fine lines between service and servant, guardian and warden, I watched my parents climb over their conflicts and pain to face each new struggle with determination, grace, and courage; still teaching me, and still parenting me, when I wasn’t too overwhelmed to notice.
Welcome to my unexpected journey. In 2003 I became a full time caregiver for both my parents. They so surprised me with their courage and strength that I scribbled notes about them to share with my brother. The notes turned into paragraphs, then the paragraphs into chapters, and finally became a book that is my tribute to my parents.
This is a daughter’s memoir of peering beyond the murky battleground of childhood memories to discover who my parents had been and how it shaped who they’d become. It is a poignant story of my family waving the white flag, laying down our weapons, and bandaging our wounds with acceptance, humor, faith, and a little grumbling. At the table where my mother had provided a lifetime of great meals and good stories, we forged our new roles with respect, compassion and love.