Saturday, May 21, 2011

A Powerful Video

from the Alzheimer's Association
I just quickly wanted to share this video with you all. I think it is quite powerful and shows the main facts and figures of Alzheimer's Disease. It makes me cry every time. Please share it with others so they know how this disease affects our nation.

Alzheimer's Facts and Figures video, by the Alzheimer's Association.


Rev. Katie

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Looking For Help

When I look at the “Stats” for my blog, one of the statistics they give me is the keywords people have used which brought them to my website. I look at these keywords almost every day and it makes is clear to me that so many of us are looking for help.

You may be like me, up during the wee hours of the night, searching the web for answers. For help to understand whatever new things have popped up in your world of living with dementia.

I wanted to share some of those keywords with you, as a reminder that while dementia is different for every person and family, we still have so much in common. We are all looking for answers to things we might not always talk about during the day at work, at school, or at home, but we search for in the anonymity of the internet.

Maybe it is helpful for all of us to know we are not alone:

“refuses to read books or exercise dementia”
“what if a dementia person is in denial?”
“combination of dementia and Parkinsons”
“dementia getting worse”
“dementia patients don't know what day it is”
“dementia the long goodbye”
“Alzheimer’s grief”
“dementia activities”
“Lewy Body prognosis”
"Dad care for Mom"
“Alzheimer’s dementia abandonment family”

The most frequently used search terms that bring you here, besides the title of the blog, are:

“bradykinesia or slowness of”
“for mom she noticed”
“dementia calendar”
“dementia quote”

I hope we continue to build community and find ways to be there for each other in our search for help.


Rev. Katie

Friday, May 13, 2011

Never Prepared

No matter how much you know about dementia, I don't think you are ever prepared for how it progresses. I know the disease gets worse. I know there may be a day when my Mom does not know who I am. I know her ability to do everyday tasks is diminishing. Yet the changes of dementia catch me off guard every time.

The other day Mom called to me for help with something. I went into her bathroom and found her staring at the sink. She said "I don't know how to turn the water on."

That caught me by surprise. She had forgotten how to push the lever up to get water.

Every time something like that happens, a vision of the future goes through my head. I worry that one day when we are not home she will not be able to get a drink of water. I wonder what will be the next thing she can't remember how to do. Might she forget how to open the drawer? I know she has already been having a hard time with brushing her hair.

Equally confusing is the fact that this progression varies from day to day. She has not completely forgotten how to turn on the water, it happens sporadically.

Even though I am never quite prepared for these changes and it scares me when they happen, after the initial shock I am able to be in the moment. We can only deal with what is happening at the time, worrying about the future does not help.

At times like this I am grateful for the relationship we have and that Mom feels comfortable enough to ask for help when she needs it. And often she has a great sense of humor and laughs about things she can't remember or when she jumbles words together.

Who knows what will come next. I know I won't really be fully prepared for it, but I also know our family will work with what we have.


Rev. Katie