09/25/2013 02:24 pm ET

When Parenting Your Parents Becomes Heartbreaking


"Get ready. What you're going to see isn't pleasant." Those were the words of warning from my sister as I prepared to embark on a journey to Norway to visit my 87-year-old grandmother. "Mormor," our Norwegian grandmother (literally translated it means "mother's mother")had been a central part of our lives for as long as my sister and I could remember. We spent each summer traveling with our parents to my mother's homeland where we would stay in our grandparents' house for a month at a time. There, we would enjoy home-cooked meals in the Scandinavian tradition, trips to visit far-flung locales in the northern part of the country, and lots of time as a family spent playing cards and telling stories.

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