Harry is one of my primary mentors, and the prime reason I now take the time and energy to write my own blog, and the many hours I spend to share the writing of others.
ALL of them are excellent, but these are my favorite October 2015 excerpts from Harry Urban’s blog on subject of dementia symptoms.
October 1, 2015
No one likes to talk about the symptom of fear that goes with living with dementia. Fear of the unknown, fear of the future and the fear of not knowing what to do.
So many of us live in fear because we simply do not know what to do.
Something happens and we have no idea what to do so time stands still and we stand there doing nothing.
I’m asked, what are you doing, and I have no idea.
That is what scares me, there are times when my body does things that I have no idea why.
It is like the saying, what were you thing. You didn’t think it through but you just reacted and that is what someone living with dementia so often times do, they react and never think it through.
Tags: symptoms, fear, role, muscle memory,
October 6, 2015
Living with dementia is not all doom and gloom, it can be quite funny at times, like the time I used a tube of diaper rash thinking it was tooth paste. To me it looked exactly like my tooth paste and was in the same drawer as my tooth paste. Sometimes I say something and it takes all of Hazel’s willpower not to burst out laughing.
Things like this become family treasures that are talked about long after we are gone. It is ok to laugh during your care giving duties and build family memories. I found out a long time ago that it is so much better to laugh then it is to cry. Living with dementia, you will be doing both so do what you enjoy best.
Tags: humor, symptoms
October 8, 2015
Another flashback of days long ago happen to me when Hazel pulled into the driveway and told me she thinks she has a flat tire. My first thought was call AAA and see if someone could change it but Hazel always said, why have it if we don’t use it.
I know it was up to me and honestly my manhood started to shine and I told her, I can do this. I changed plenty of tires in my life so what could have changed over the years. First things first, put it in park and make sure the emergency brakes is on. Put blocks behind the rear tires and jack it up. So far I was pretty proud in how I was handling this crisis and went for the jack.
Where in the world did they hide the jack and once I found it hidden away why did they make it child proof.
It’s amazing how they could stuff the jack in such a little compartment and make it look so damn funny. Where do I put this thing to jack up the car and how do I us it.
Time to get Hazel involved.
She went over the instructions for changing the tire but before I jack it up, I needed to find the spare tire. Laying on my back I found what appeared to be the spare tire under the car. Having no idea how to get the tire down it was back to reading the instructions. Never in a million years would I have guessed to put a part of the jack into a hole in the bumper and crack the spare tire down. When I did get it down, it looked like the silliest thing I ever saw.
By this time I was ready to call it a day and go back inside and put my feet up but I still had a tire to change. With Hazel’s guiding me and keeping a eagle eye on me to make sure I did it safely WE got it changed and took it to the garage for them to fix it.
Lesson learn is that it is a good idea to get some type of roadside service and let someone else worry about it.
Tags: roadside assistance, humor, symptoms
October 8, 2015
All my days are not enjoyable but I do my best to make them entertaining.
After 11 years. I’m not suppose to be this way but I can’t help it. These are my golden years with a little rust that I need to polish at times. More of my friends are getting additional care and maybe I am to but don’t realize it. I\now know that all my shoes are slip on and not needing to be tied. Little things like that are needed when you are living with dementia.
I’m now talking like my grandfather used to and I always thought he was so old. Come to think about it, he was cranky at times but always had a smile, just like me.
Tags: shoes, entertainment, symptoms
October 14, 2015
Sometimes I feel like I only have photographs and memories left.
It seems my life revolves on things long past and it is so hard to think of the present or the future.
What is becoming of me that I have to live in mt past?
I believe dementia does that to a person by not allowing us to remember the present
but can’t prevent us from living the past.
I can’t remember what I had for dinner last night but
I can tell you where I took Hazel out when we were dating
50 years ago.
Maybe my past is more exciting then the present and that is why it is so hard to make and keep these present day memories.
I will stay happy with the photographs and memories I made years ago
and live the life I remember.
Tags: perspective, history, symptoms
October 18, 2015
Don’t cry for me because I am lost,
I don’t know I’m lost.
I may not know where I am
but I don’t remember where I should be
so I don’t ever think that I may be lost.
looking for leads
where I am supposed to go
but most times I never find them, …
Tags: symptoms, perspective, lost, wandering
October 19, 2015
When I wander, I am not lost.
I am exploring.
I am not trying to get somewhere but rather trying to see what is out there.
People wander for many reasons but in my case, it is merely curiosity.
We are shopping and I walk off maybe because I became bored and just want to see what is in the next aisle.
For the person caring for me it can be frightening
but to me I am doing what comes naturally to me
and don’t realize the danger I may be putting myself into.
It is fun to explore
so do you try to prevent me from doing it
or do you find ways to give me my freedom
and let me explore while staying safe?
So I guess I’m trying to decide if preventing me from exploring is for my safety or your peace of mind.
Tags: risk, symptoms, wandering, perspective
October 23, 2015
I am slowly forgetting the names of the people I love
but it doesn’t matter to any of us.
We know the day is coming when
I will no longer be able to verbally express my love
but the bond we have needs no words to be felt.
So many things, when you are living with dementia, needs to be taken for granted.
You cannot assume
that my dementia has taken away my love for you
when it only prevents me from expressing it.
I may not remember the good times
but will always know that you made me happy.
You may think I have lost so much but there are some things that are impossible to take from us. You may have to throw away the things you assume and take for granted I can still do, in my own ways, the things that matter.
Tags: relationships, communication, names, symptoms
October 24, 2015
Today I woke up disorientated and not knowing where I was.
I looked around not recognizing anything and
Jade, my dog, whimpered and wanted my attention.
This brought me back to reality
and I was able to focus on where I was.
Most mornings it takes me awhile to get my “thoughts” focused
and be ready to face the day.
I am not a morning person and don’t want to be rushed to start my day.
Hazel knows and understands this and
gives me a wide berth in the morning
while still tending to my needs.
By doing this she avoids any confrontations
and once I get focused on the day we can start enjoying it.
Tags: routine, disorientation, animals, symptoms
October 27, 2015
Why is it so hard for people to show respect for people living with dementia
and fighting for dementia awareness? They tag you in spam to sell some junk that they are pedaling in disregard for the battles that you are living.
You can’t ask them to kindly stop tagging you because they have their own agenda and have no respect for you. I am tired of turning the other cheek giving them the benefit of the doubt. Don’t be surprised when you tag me and try to sell your junk on my page and you get to see the ugly nasty side of me that Alzheimer’s is controlling.
I’m not interested in anything you are selling but I’ll take anything you are giving away. One of the ways I amuse myself when someone knocks on my door with a smile on their face with the intention of selling me something.
I sometimes tell them that I will listen to them if they listen to me and what it is like living with dementia first. I have to be quick and on my guard because you can sell me anything.
I never carry credit cards and carry very little cash because I have no concept of money. It has little interest to me and created several problems in the past.
I carry this bulls eye that indicates that I’m I easy target
but I have learn how to be the biggest pain in the neck
and the desire to prove I’m just not interested.
Living with Alzheimer’s can be fun at times.
Tags: money, spam, symptms
October 27, 2015
The person with dementia can still experience emotions even though they are unable to express them. Pain is one of those emotions that we may not be able to tell you about. Sinus problems may cause so many different problems that we just can’t explain.
When my sinuses are bad, they may cause a pain in my jaw which hurts when I eat or brush my teeth. So many little pains go undetected because we assume that our dementia is the cause.
Our care partners need to become detectives
to find out why we do the things we do.
There is always a reason why we do something which may be unrelated to our dementia. My feet may be sore and I don’t want to wear shoes. Look for others reason why we are acting strangely because it may not be caused by our dementia.
Tags: Symptoms, pain, CarePartners
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