Dementia-Friendly Mother’s Day

Seven Sweet Ideas to Celebrate

mom with dementia and daughter celebrating at lunchMother’s Day is frequently a day filled with emotion, especially if your mother is suffering from dementia. Acknowledging the emotion—the joy, the grief, the regret, the love—and creating a plan for the day, transforms it. I gathered some sweet ideas for you, whether your own mom is still with you or not.

If your mom is with you (but not entirely), try these ideas.
  1. Share happy memories about her from the past, reminding everyone who she is.
  2. Celebrate all her senses with her favorite music and yummy scents. 
  3. Get a manicure together. (Maybe the grandchildren can do nails for you & grandma!)
  4. Look at a picture album together.
  5. Tell stories from her life where she was funny/bright/successful, etc.
  6. Take an easy trip to a park or a beautiful drive. Just get out of the house.
  7. Simply cherish that she’s still with you, even if the dementia has caused her not to know you.
  8. Buy a gift that keeps her hands busy.
If your mom has passed away, remember her in one of these ways.
  1. Try out a hobby she loved. Maybe doing so will provide new insight into her.
  2. Repurpose a piece of her jewelry. 
  3. Make a donation in her honor.
  4. Frame her handwriting (maybe it’s a recipe card or a note).
  5. Spend time with others who loved her too and enjoy reminiscing. 
  6. Celebrate another mother in your life.
  7. Take a break from social media so you aren’t bombarded with Mother’s Day pictures that could make the day even harder for you.

If you anticipate that other family members will be grieving that day too, consider including them in the planning of something. 

Whatever the day looks like for you, may you feel love and express love!

Elizabeth Dameron-Drew is the Co-founder and President of Ways & Wane. She walked closely with her own father through his years of waning. She lives near Seattle with her two teenage sons, husband and two rescue dogs. When she’s not working on this platform she’s probably creating books, doing research work or planning a dinner party while listening to the rain and thinking about her next creative endeavor.