Sunday, August 25, 2013

Dementia...The Golden Years Disease

This is my mom. A loving lady who has been a poet since she was 12 years old. She has written over 800 poems and printed one poetry book,  has written 4 spiritual study manuals and has won many awards, too many to mention. She is an elegant lady who is neat in her appearance, soft spoken, an avid runner ( has been running 10 miles everyday for the past 25 years) and she is an overall caring & very giving lady. She is super active in her community and gives exercise class twice a week to the elderly at her church.
I had not seen my mother for a little over a year. When I saw her I was impressed to see a very fit and beautiful lady. Well manicured and lovely as ever. But through the week she was here I noticed a some things about her that worried me. She was repeating herself a lot, asking questions on how to do certain tasks she has done all her life. She was eating very little and I had to remind her when it was time to eat. She never asked for some relatives that lives by me, which struck me as odd because every time she arrived here she would immediately ask me to call them so they could get together. This time she never mentioned them and when I would tell her about them she would look at me funny as if she had no idea who I was speaking of. 
This is a picture of my Mom...July 2013.
As always she offered to do the laundry which she does whenever she is here, but when I was folding the clothes they just didn't smell clean. Come to find out she forgot to put in the laundry soap. I didn't want to hurt her feeling so after she left I re-washed those 2 loads of clothes.
One day we went to Walmart and on our way out of the store she saw a small bottle of Elmer's glue in a cart that was by the bathrooms. She picked it up and put it in her jean pocket, I immediately asked her what she was doing...she said..." I'm taking it home." I immediately corrected her and said no. "If you want it Mom, I will buy it for you. But you cannot take anything from the store unless you pay for it." Her response..."Why, I take things all the time." You all know my brain blew up silently and my eyes got bigger...enough said...right.
I knew this matter had to be addressed with my brother and sister. My brother and sister want to take her to their house to live but she refuses, so she is carefully being watched by them.
There is nothing in this world that could break my heart then to see my mother change from being alert and quick to think and then to see how quickly she has declined mentally in one year.
I know that eventually we will need to make drastic changes in our lives to accommodate her every need; but when that day comes we will all be willing to change our lives in order to care for her.
If you have a loved one who is mentally ill or is suffering with Dementia or Alzheimer's, my heart pours out to you...I hope you may be blessed with lots of patience and an extreme amount of unconditional love...God Bless you.

1 comment:

  1. what a test of love caring for a beloved parent...