Our first guest blog today is from Vincent, who blogs about his experience caring for his mother with Alzheimer’s disease. I encourage you all to check him out at www.dementia-mama-drama.com
What do you remember? If I asked you how your day was today, what would your answer be? “Another day, another dollar.” “Nothing special.” “TGIF!” Our lives are made up of our memories. When you’re losing your memory, the struggle to keep your memories can be the longest day. So I asked Mama what her day was like and you can see her answer in this short video:
Mama and I are a lot alike in many ways. We handle difficult situations through humor. We both love food & music (which is very therapeutic for us). We are both worriers (okay, we’re neurotic)! She was always very protective of me as a child and now I am protective of her as an Alzheimer’s patient. The days are long for the both of us for different reasons. Hers, because of her dementia confusion and loneliness. Mine, with the constant challenge of being a caregiver for Mama and trying to balance my own life. There’s been a complete role reversal of parent and child. But it’s a bond that can’t be broken and I wouldn’t have it any other way… because who else is going to do it? It’s difficult when there’s no other family there for support, but as Mama says “the hell with them” (and that’s putting it mildly).
I’ve started recording videos during my daily visits as therapy for her and for myself. Her mood changes and she loves the attention. She feels she is finally getting her fifteen minutes of fame and I think I’ve created a monster! I am so thankful that she loves to sing and actually entertains me… on a good day! I ask her questions and am always curious at what her response will be. Sometimes it’s the truth, sometimes she makes something up or breaks into song to change the subject. Or she’ll tell me to “just shut up and let’s play cards!”
I only hope that through research and awareness of Alzheimer’s we can cure this disease. Hopefully one day it will no longer be the longest day for the patient or the caregiver. And we can all keep our memories.
Read more about Mama at www.dementia-mama-drama.com.