At first, I didn’t really understand that she was slowly slipping away. My father had died suddenly just as he was turning 65. He had been the stabilizing influence in our family, and without him, I remember feeling as though I was trying to balance my life on a two-legged stool. In addition, after he died I became aware of how much he had encouraged and supported our mother. He was the one who calmed her when she was anxious or fearful.
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