My Mama, Still Teaching Me

Never give up. Never stop fighting.

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Dear friends and caregivers, 


On the morning of Thursday, March 3, our family said goodbye to my mother, Gloria, following a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. As many of you know, it doesn’t matter how much this disease has already taken, or how prepared we might feel — we are still heartbroken. 


Mom was the inspiration for the Gloria’s Way community in more ways than one. Though she was the one being the one cared for in the end, Mom was a caregiver at heart, always putting everyone else’s needs before her own. Watching her in these final days, I couldn’t help but think of the courage she showed through the early to mid-stages of her illness.

I don’t think we talk often enough about what it must be like to hear this diagnosis, with no cure in sight when you are still cognizant of the bleak future ahead, changes happening beyond your understanding or control. 


How must that have felt for her? To know and feel the stages of the disease?

I remember having conversations about her understanding of what was to come . . . living without hope for the future. Everyone talks about “hope” as the flicker of light that keeps people going. But reflecting on Mom’s journey, I recognize now that it wasn’t hope that kept her going. It was simply the will to continue experiencing as much of life as possible, while she still could.


As always, she is teaching me. And I’ll continue to share those lessons here with you in celebration of Mom’s life as a caregiver, wife, mother, and friend.

Thank you for being a part of our journey and sharing your own joy and sorrows along the way.  


With gratitude,


Tonia Porras

Daughter, Caregiver, Founder | Gloria’s Way

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