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Amongst other things, this is a love story.... the theme changes occasionally... this year it is fitness and learning to love yourself.

6 May 2015

Reflections A - Z challenge 2015

Two days after her 73rd birthday my Mum took her final breath. She had Alzheimers and Motor neurone disease. For her final 3 months I was her main carer. A privilege I am grateful for and will cherish forever. This years #atozchallenge theme will focus on being a carer / care-giver. 
Remember to care for the carers.

A to Z Challenge 


As usual I use the Reflections post to give the A-Z challenge organisers some feedback as requested.

I also use it to link all my posts together, and give a little commentary on each.

Things I loved about participating in the 2015 #atozchallenge:
  1. I did it. 
  2. Caught up with bloggers that I haven't connected with since last year.
  3. Connected with new bloggers that are on a similar journey to me.
  4. Received supportive and encouraging comments that helped me finish the challenge.
  5. The process of writing, with a firm structure but loose boundaries, has helped me  become a better writer.
  6. The theme helped my healing process and seems to have given some other people an opportunity to share their own stories.

 Things I would like to see changed:
  1. Nothing. The host's/helpers and overall challenge are great. Sure there are plenty of people that sign up and don't start or finish the challenge... but your system of removing them is good enough, and done by a dedicated bunch. I have noticed over the last couple of years people seem to complain most about things that can't be changed... 
Things I would change about myself.
  1. Comment on and visit more blogs, I noticed a huge difference in the amount of visits to my page as a result of not blog hopping.  I do know it's one of the main points of the challenge... This years journey was just more personal.
  2. Get in early - I almost forgot to sign up to the link list.  
  3. Offer to be co-host/assistant.  I loved helping last year. It is a good way of forcing myself to visit more blogs. 

Here are the links to all my posts for this years challenge:

A to Z challenge Theme reveal.
I chose to write about the one thing I couldn't stop thinking about.

Anger and Anxiety
From the moment I saw the message that Mum had 6 months left to live, I have had a lot of reasons to be angry.  I think the main reason I did this years theme was to release what remained.

Bemused and Befuddled
Here's a fun poke at some of the baffling situations many carers experience.

How much good are we really doing when keeping someone alive prolongs their suffering.

Denying Degeneration
Maybe she was just a great actress - When her friends bid her farewell, she did show her movie star smile

Easter without her
If I had to choose a single holiday to start our year of firsts without her -  Easter wins.

Freedom from Fear
No I'm not a burglar, it's me your daughter.

Would you like to know how long you have left to live?

Hugs in Hell
When living on earth becomes it's own type of Hell.

Inhalation annihilation
Imagine your head underwater and only a tiny straw to breathe through - for months.

Joy - An ode to
Joy was her name.

Knowledge and Knowing
They are intertwined but there is a difference.

Laughter is the best medicine
Some of the bad jokes I used to tell her and how they make me laugh.

My birthday
Sharing my last birthday with Mum

Now or Never
Preparing for death.

It doesn't matter what you believe in some things just can't be explained or understood.

Palliative care team
They are just like any other humans, some are better at their job than others.

When no means yes and hot means cold.

Respite from Rage
Even the strong need a place to rest.

A recipe of sorts.  This soup probably stopped her from succumbing to MND much sooner.

I am grateful - but why is caring for loved ones a privilege?

Rituals are for the living. I'm so glad I didn't let the undertakers take her when they first came.

A list of do's and don'ts -

Worry Jar
$1 for every worry. She was happy to pay.

X - eXonerated
No-one imagined this rebel child would be the one to care for Mum. I knew all along.

Young again
What happens when you walk in your daughters shoes.

Time flies faster the further you go.

I hope you enjoyed my theme. Click the link for more Reflections posts by other challengers...

See you for the 2016 #atozchallenge (if not before :) 


I use #atozchallenge when sharing my favourite posts.

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Learn more about:

 The A to Z challenge here.


  1. Your theme is thought provoking. Enjoyed it thoroughly.
    I commend you and admire you for being there for your mom. For my mom, I was there only for a week and then just weekends.
    Take care of yourself. Care takers have to.

  2. It was a complex theme for you to carry out, and you did well with it.

  3. I've just finally popped on your blog for a change (instead of telling you on Twitter) just how much your theme meant to me, I'm so glad you shared your final journey with your mum with us all.

    So beautifully written and so very moving, I read it religiously every day (even though I didn't comment during the challenge, as I signed up to email subscription after the last A to Z Challenge you did) I've had to include it as my must read on my Reflections Post.

    Love and hugs
    Mars xx
    Curling Stones for Lego People

  4. Hi Ida,

    My dear friend, hearty kudos to you. I appreciate the effort and the thoughtful themed posts you shared. I understand that the overall ethos with the A to Z should be the interaction and the proactive responses. You embrace such ideals and for that, well done and have a peaceful weekend.

    Gary :)

  5. Hi Ida - I think your theme was a brilliant one to chose - and you did share so much .. that will I hope be of value to many. Also it will provide that supportive backstory to your love and care you had for your mother in her last journey. Good for you ... and I'm glad the postings helped with your healing timeframe ...

    Interesting isn't it - how things pan out .. I bet you're glad to be back in Denmark .. though I feel sorry for you and your loss - but you really did your absolutely utmost - and that will stand you in so much stead for the future ..

    Cheers - Hilary

  6. Dropping in on the Road Trip. Glad to have found your blog and planning a time to sit and read your A to Z posts. Very heartwarming theme :)

  7. I'm so sorry to hear about your mum. What a beautiful theme you have chosen.
    Popping by on the A to Z Road Trip

  8. You had an incredible theme this year, Ida. I truly admire your dedication to being a care-giver for your mother. I hope someday, if I have to, I can do the same. <3
    Brandy from Brandy's Bustlings

  9. I am visiting today on the A to Z Road Trip. I will come back and read all your posts as this is a topic I am interested in. I cared for my husband with end-stage Parkinson's and dementia. He lost his battle last July. I wrote last year about caring for him.

  10. I'm dropping in on the A-Z Road trip and I'm just sorry I didn't find your blog during the challenge - visiting other blogs was one of the harder parts of the challenge. I've just read all your posts (I can empathise having lost my Mum to Alzheimer's in 2012 and although she was in a nursing home for the last few years of her life I was definitely her main carer.) You illustrate so well the ups and downs of being a carer. I hope that doing it has helped with your grieving process. Thank you for sharing.

  11. I'm still checking out blogs from the list! Glad I finally got to yours. I say you carried out your theme marvelously.