My mom is going downhill. She IS remarkable for 93, and I know it. But she is not my mother anymore -- not the woman I have known. We have had a loving and hard relationship (of course -- the whole nine yards). But what I am finding is that I am very tense when we are together. I cannot relax. I feel like stone so often when we are together. I am seeing a therapist as I know I am grieving the loss of my mother, but why can't I soften? I know I see the face of the disease, and we are facing another place of decrepit downturn. She won't shower. She wonders why she can't find my sister (who totally ignores my mother, and gives her nothing), and tonight she was sure she was living in Vermont. She lives in Florida. I think the reason why i am strung so tight is I never know what will happen next, and I know we are not at the hardest part yet. I am not hugging her enough, touching her enough. I know I don't do enough even though I am doing the best I can. Does anyone else ever feel like this? Stony, when you want to be soft? This time is the last of it for us, and I can either love her a lot and express that or stay bottled as I am. So much of what I want to do for her she refuses. I would so love some understanding and KIND advice. No flaming please, please. I cannot take it. I am hard enough on myself.