On our last night together, my mother surprised us once more. In a good way.
Five days in a row, many times over, she had asked my daughter about her career plan after college. Each time, she was proud to hear her: "Je veux travailler pour une organisation humanitaire, pour aider les pays pauvres comme l' Afrique." Tonight, my mother stopped my daughter's midstream and finished the sentence for her. 'humanitaire' is a big word to remember especially after having lived with Alzheimer's for six plus years.
This is what happened after five days of spending three hours daily with my mother, being (almost) perfectly attuned to her reality, and helping her make connections with this world we live in. A perfect case of neuroplasticity in action, and the brain responding positively to a cocktail of just plain love, emptathy, and mindfulness.
* "I want to work for a humanitarian organization, you know the kind that helps poor countries like Africa."