Thoughts On Alzheimer’s Disease

I haven’t been writing much because I have been spending a lot of time on an Alzheimer’s forum.  It’s only been a little over a month since the diagnosis was confirmed by doctors, but man it feels like forever ago.

Some days, like yesterday, mom is almost normal, just old.  She almost remembered where we were and most everything she said made some sense. We all went for a ride to Ocean State and Stop and Shop.  She got tired two aisles into the grocery store and Jim took her out to sit in the Jeep. God Bless that man.

It wasn’t until we got home and were sitting in the living room that she asked me who we were feeding in the back hall.  #1 we don’t have a back hall. #2 we really aren’t feeding anyone.  She insisted Jim lets people in and feeds them during the day.  Maybe they come to visit the lady who sits at the end of the hall or the men who have passes to fix her window in the middle of the night. Guess all those extra people explains the increase in our grocery bill.

To mom, there are always people in the back hall. Like I said we don’t have a back hall, she hasn’t had a back hall in over 40 years. Not since we moved out of the 3 decker in Worcester when I was 10. It is so weird how this disease acts.  As little as the medical professionals know about it they do know people show the same type of memory loss no matter what their lives have been like.

Alzheimer’s patients lose the present, near present, and work backwards. Short term memory goes first. Remembering what happened ten minutes ago is gone. As each hour drags on they go further back. People from today become people from long gone. Home is not where they live now, it is where they have lived in the past. Everything they learned through out a life time of living is erased in a matter of months. It is sad and scary when our brain just decides to quit. Walk off the job like we don’t need it. Our brain, the main computer for everything we are, just progressively shuts down.

It was suggested to me, by people on an Alzheimer’s forum, that I keep a journal of everything. That means any changes, physical, behavioral, and mental. I thought about it when we originally went to the doctors, but didn’t need it. Now I agree it will come in handy as this monster moves forward.  Being able to have the information at my fingertips in the upcoming months could be the difference between making informed decisions versus guilt trip or accusatory ones.

My new writing assignment, a journal of a journey through AD. Handwritten, free form, and no grammar or spell check. Hopefully I’ll be able to decipher it when it’s needed.


About ramblinann

I live in Massachusetts and always have. My family continues to grow with the addition of many grandchildren, who steal my heart every time I see them. Recently I was able to check off an item on my bucket list and earn my Associate Degree in Complementary Healthcare, but usually, I can be found sitting behind the wheel of a big yellow school bus. I love to write, though there seems to be some missing connection between my thoughts and the ability of my fingers to put those thoughts on paper, or the screen in this case.
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5 Responses to Thoughts On Alzheimer’s Disease

  1. SR says:

    Mom and I had beauty shop day last Wednesday. I cannot tell you all that came out of her mouth. Some of it though, I must say, was sooooooooo funny. It is sad when we lose those we love and that is what AD does. It takes away the person we have always known. So I have found all I can do is embrace the person she is now, accept it, and enjoy her. They will always be our Mom no matter their state of mind. I do enjoy the “normal” moments, but have found some of the “not so normal” are as enjoyable as well. Thanks for post. God Bless, SR

    • ramblinann says:

      Thank you SR. Glad you are able to get your mom out. Right now it takes two of us because the weather is so bad. I hope I will be able to get her out more once it gets warmer and dryer. Even if I have to sit her butt in a wheelchair and wheel her around. We have a brand new sitting in storage.
      Have a wonderful week and keep smiling.

  2. nivaladiva says:

    The journal sounds like a great idea. My heart goes out to you and your Mom. I can relate a little because Kaz had short term memory loss pretty bad in the end. I haven’t written about it yet. After dealing with it for a few months, I am in awe of people who deal with it for years. Good luck with the journal. I hope it helps.

    • ramblinann says:

      I’m sorry Kaz had to suffer with STML. It’s horrible to watch, It has to be enormously worse to have. I used to wonder if I would rather my mind or my body go first. Not anymore.
      I don’t think I am one of those people who are going to be able to deal with it full time for years. I feel like all I do now is complain and it hasn’t really even started yet. Time will tell.

  3. jlsm697 says:

    Ann, I enjoy your blog. We sound the same.

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