TLK Strategies 2017Speech Spiritual

This is transcript and video Link for second of four quadrants from my speech.

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Importance of Communication with PWD

Be willing to invest NOW in learning communication skills for the later stages, so that you can more easily discern the language spoken in the “fading” communications of late-stage dementia … because relationships are what make life worth living.

My Spiritual Journey in Context of Dementia Symptoms

My spiritual perspectives have changed dramatically in past ten years, but memories of WHY I myself made those changes are growing dim. Why do I no longer celebrate the special days that my loved ones celebrate? … Soon I suspect you will again find me enjoying those activities, because my theological understanding is going backward in time, as well as all my other memories.

Is “Best” of Person With Dementia (PWD) GONE ?

I do not feel that the “best” of my grandmother was gone in her later stages. Her context was gone. The ability to delay gratification was gone. The ability to even know what she wanted or who she was … was gone. But her visceral response to life was NOT gone. Having my grandmother as a Dementia Mentor (even if only in my memory), has been a tremendous source of hope and example. In my final days I hope the same can be said of me.

Focus on Essential Priorities

My ability to make a difference pre-diagnosis, and ability to make a difference post-diagnosis are very different. In the very-big-picture of what differences I can make while living on earth, I would pick the much larger differences with my post-diagnosis life. In the really big picture I can effect my main goal of demonstrating Truthful Loving Kindness much better post-diagnosis. Maybe not in my lifetime, but I will write as long as possible … and eventually the PWD voice will be recognized as very valuable asset for those who have relationship of any kind with a PWD. And that is a big deal to me because relationships make life worth living.