I was gone most of April, but these are my favorite excerpts from my friend Harry Urban’s blog during May 2015
Harry Urban May 8 at 4:10pm · Three out of three lawn mowers had problems within days of each other. One in still in the shop, another I replaced a belt and the third I just started to laugh at. Problems like this will upset the apple cart and drive me into a major anxiety attack.
Hazel kept me from going over the edge and we went shopping for flowers. Like most people living with dementia, I am unable to handle the simplest of problems and feel like a good cry because these things never bothered me before.
I feel inadequate because I should be able to not only control my emotions but handle day to day problems. Everything is a major issue with me and I don’t know how to fix it. Alzheimer’s is way more then just forgetting things, it robs you of your respect and dignity.
Harry Urban May 10 at 10:24am · What does it take for your care partner to make you happy. The answer is simple, nothing. Happiness has to come from within and there is nowhere you can buy it. I see so many people living with dementia and they are miserable because they are waiting for someone to make them happy …
Harry Urban May 13;
Have you ever considered the gifts we received from getting Alzheimer’s? Most times we think about the heartaches and hardships associated with living with Alzheimer’s that we wouldn’t ever think there could be a gift somewhere.
Can anything good come out of losing our skills and forgetting so much of our past? Only you can answer that question but in my case, it forced me to slow down and start a new life living with my disease. I forgot so much of my past and a lot of it was the bad things that accursed to me. Maybe forgetting the bad things is a gift.
Being forced to slow down is definitely a gift because it made me aware of the things that are important to me and look at my life from different angles. Some will argue with me but they received the same gifts I did and may not know it yet.
Harry Urban May 16;
How many practice Validation Therapy which is the caregiver validating whatever the person with memory loss believes to be true in an effort to keep them calm and engaged? If you don’t, you may want to learn more about it.
Hazel is a master at this. If I see something she doesn’t, she will agree with me then redirect me to some other topic. She knows she will never win the argument of trying to convince me I am wrong and believes in peace and harmony over being right.
Going with the flow is hard at times because you may feel you are adding to the dementia but like I said a brazillion times, you will never win a argument with someone with dementia. Agree and then move onto another topic will save you a lot of tears and hair pulling.
Harry Urban May 20;
What can you possibly say to someone that is grieving about the things they lost? They are watching their life slowly drift away and it is getting kind of scary to them. They are losing their prize posessions and can not do a thing about it.
They are unable to rebuild that life because it will be completely gone and the memories will never be thought about again. It is scary but you can not be consumed by it. Entering into this disease we know that some things will be lost but we can not worry about them.
We can move forward and create new memories, They may not be as great as the ones we lost but perhaps, they will be better. These new memories are unlike any that you have had previously, because they were created living this new life. We are looking through entirely different eyes and see things so much different. It is an exciting life if you allow it to be,
This is what I see when I am sitting in one of my favorite places, my upstairs deck. Besides having my best buddy Jade there with me, I have herbs which give off the best smells and wind chimes to help sooth my spirits. I have colorful flowers to brighten my spirits and humming bird feeders to top it off.
When I create a get away place, I try to add those things that pleasantly effect my senses. I bought a water feature for the the deck but decided to keep it in my den for wh…en I am indoors at the computer. We removed the steps that led downstairs and installed railings on all sides. This keeps it safe for me and prevents me from wandering away.
I spend hours on my deck reading and listening to music. We created a safe sanctuary for me where I can sit in all types of weather and find my inner peace. Hazel’s and my wish is that as my Alzheimer’s progresses I have somewhere to escape the realities of my world and we are creating that in my home.
You will scratch your head wondering how I could possible be so happy. You will think I am one of the lucky ones and eleven years ago when I was diagnoses with Alzheimer’s, there was some kind of mistake. Of c…ourse you never saw the gallons of tears that were shed or the nights I awoke sweating with fears.
There is no way that you could possibly know the things I lost or the life I once had. You see this happy go lucky person living with dementia and wonder why. The answer is simple, I found a purpose for my life and that inner peace that goes with it. I am not afraid of my future and will deal with whatever comes up. It is a very good way to live and I am more then willing to tell you how I am doing it
May 30, 2015
Somewhere along the path of Alzheimer’s I lost my ‘giveadarn’. Things that were once so important to me just don’t have the same appeal to me. I pick and choose my arguments but I give it my all when I do pick one. I tend to overlook the petty annoyances that once lit my fuse.
I really like not having a ‘giveadarn’ but sometimes it infuriates Hazel. She thinks at times I don’t care with my lackadaisical attitude but I feel so much better without it. I lost control over my anger one time and it scared me. Dementia has a way of doing that. Since then I walk away from a problem and never look back. Right or wrong, it works for me.
Anger is so hard to control and I find it is best for me to simple avoid it. Now I have to work on my enjoyment of karma.
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