A journey in time with Alzheimer's

Posts tagged ‘caring is sharing’

Mommy It’s Me

http://www.adrive.com/public/zDenhT/Mommy-Its-Me-mix-10-01-14.wav

 

This is a sweet song written by my cousin Raymond Nunes.  His wife’s mother has Alzheimer’s.  They care for her in their home.  Thank you Raymond for sharing.

 

Sharing is Caring/ November 21, 2014/sg

Sharing Is Caring/ A good day for Mother

My brother David Cranmer visiting Mom. So glad there are here. My siblings are my strength. Visits are priceless for Mother.

The Ocean at the End of the Memory</p><br /><br />
<p>“The years have taken its course,” my mom says. She pauses after that statement, and though it’s poignant it’s hard to determine where she is in the moment. In this final stage of Alzheimer’s I want to believe she is aware of who I am and cognizant of our conversation. But I get the sense anyone sitting with her in this nursing home in northeast Texas could be me. The frame that borders her world is crumbling fast, expunging names, faces, and memories, limiting us to what we can talk about. So I search for what’s left, the familiar that remains. An old story from her past told one more time, not so much for her but for me. I want to be lulled back to when she remembers, and that takes us to her birthplace of Georgetown in then British Guyana.</p><br /><br />
<p>Her language is jumbled as I jot down her words:</p><br /><br />
<p>“British had lots of water pushing in … I would stay there awhile … water plunges until it gets to the bottom.”</p><br /><br />
<p>She becomes frustrated with her unintelligible thoughts, repeating, “The years taken its course.” I notice the word ‘have’ is left out of the sentence and it’s only a few minutes into the conversation. Yet, she reaches back through the years struggling to remember her story she has told many, many times: a teenage girl on the shore looking out at the ocean.</p><br /><br />
<p>“I would stay there awhile. Watching as the water swirls out and returns crashing on the shore. I would run to the top of this wall made out of stone and run across it … looking down at all the people … people in the water. People with lines in the water.”</p><br /><br />
<p>“What were the people like?”</p><br /><br />
<p>“What?”</p><br /><br />
<p>“The people in Guyana? What were they like?”</p><br /><br />
<p>“Oh,” she smiles, “They were good people.”</p><br /><br />
<p>As she reminisces, my mom observes my daughter who is laying at the other end of the couch watching a show on the Kindle Fire. “Sometimes you feel sad.”</p><br /><br />
<p>She pokes a finger toward my daughter who giggles on cue. </p><br /><br />
<p>“How old is she?” she asks.</p><br /><br />
<p>“Three and a half.”</p><br /><br />
<p>“She is very wise. Very smart.”</p><br /><br />
<p>“Yes she is,” I reply and after a few hours it’s time to go. It’s been a good visit. We gather up our belongings and Mom walks us to the exit. I enter the combination into the keypad that lets us out. She waves and I say goodbye.</p><br /><br />
<p>“Don’t say goodbye. I don’t like goodbye. Say ‘Arrivederci!’”</p><br /><br />
<p>“Arrivederci!” I say.

The Ocean at the End of the Memory

“The years have taken its course,” my mom says. She pauses after that statement, and though it’s poignant it’s hard to determine where she is in the moment. In this final stage of Alzheimer’s I want to believe she is aware of who I am and cognizant of our conversation. But I get the sense anyone sitting with her in this nursing home in northeast Texas could be me. The frame that borders her world is crumbling fast, expunging names, faces, and memories, limiting us to what we can talk about. So I search for what’s left, the familiar that remains. An old story from her past told one more time, not so much for her but for me. I want to be lulled back to when she remembers, and that takes us to her birthplace of Georgetown in then British Guyana.

Her language is jumbled as I jot down her words:

“British had lots of water pushing in … I would stay there awhile … water plunges until it gets to the bottom.”

She becomes frustrated with her unintelligible thoughts, repeating, “The years taken its course.” I notice the word ‘have’ is left out of the sentence and it’s only a few minutes into the conversation. Yet, she reaches back through the years struggling to remember her story she has told many, many times: a teenage girl on the shore looking out at the ocean.

“I would stay there awhile. Watching as the water swirls out and returns crashing on the shore. I would run to the top of this wall made out of stone and run across it … looking down at all the people … people in the water. People with lines in the water.”

“What were the people like?”

“What?”

“The people in Guyana? What were they like?”

“Oh,” she smiles, “They were good people.”

As she reminisces, my mom observes my daughter who is laying at the other end of the couch watching a show on the Kindle Fire. “Sometimes you feel sad.”

She pokes a finger toward my daughter who giggles on cue.

“How old is she?” she asks.

“Three and a half.”

“She is very wise. Very smart.”

“Yes she is,” I reply and after a few hours it’s time to go. It’s been a good visit. We gather up our belongings and Mom walks us to the exit. I enter the combination into the keypad that lets us out. She waves and I say goodbye.

“Don’t say goodbye. I don’t like goodbye. Say ‘Arrivederci!’”

“Arrivederci!” I say.

 

Proud of my Brother David/ A gifted writer/publisher/ Caring Is Sharing/ sg

As I was transferring earlier posts on my computer, came across this one and the comment by my friend comforted me AGAIN, thank you so much! / Caring Is Sharing

Want It To Be True

Wishful … thinking
Want it … to be true
Waiting for a miracle
Alzheimer’s … gone
From … you
You’d be … partly
Where you want to be
Free from … confusion
Or so … it seems to me
Can’t live in … want
It to be true
Must live … be happy
I still … have … you
You’re just different
A new person … true
One who needs my love!
More than the other you?

Copyright/ Sheila Grimes/ April 5, 2014

misswhiplash said:

with all the words you have ever written , these must be the saddest but the most truthful. One day there may be a cure for this most horrible of illnesses but right now there is none. Just do as you are doing , love your Mom more than you have ever done..NOW is when she needs it even if she seems not to want to accept it.
Be strong my dear, you CAN do it

 

Unbroken link/Caring Is Sharing

I’m not a science nerd … but … this is food for thought!

You and I can only sit and have this conversation because we both represent an unbroken link of divided cells in water at all times in the past 3 billion years.

Heard this on a documentary.   Amazing. Even with Mother’s Alzheimer’s, we’re still an unbroken link of divided cells in water at all times in the past 3 billion years. Simply awesome. These words strengthen my faith! God is good!

Caring Is Sharing/sg/November 4, 2014

Sometimes Not

Who is he … looking at me
Hugged me … wearing a grin
Should I smile … look away
Seems he thinks … I know him
You do Mom … your son-in-law
You’ve know … many years
Sometimes … you remember
Sometimes not … my tears!

Copyright/ Sheila Grimes/ October 31, 2024

I think Mother’s eyesight is amiss. I’ve read articles that say the Alzheimer’s person has narrowing vision. I’ve also noticed she grimaces when many voices are around (public places). She’s good at covering up, seeming to understand something when she doesn’t. I just take things as they come. This Momma needs much attention on outings!

Confusing days … poor Momma

Where oh where has Sheila K gone
Where oh where can she be
With her short-term … shot
And her long-term … want  
Oh where oh where can she be!

Caring Is Sharing/sg

 

Alzheimer’s Trail … 2 years old today! Thank you all for reading these words, you are an encouragement to me and my family. Mother is doing good. She has good days, she has not so good days. We take one day at a time. I hug you all! Thank-you so much. ____________ Caring Is Sharing/ sg/Oct. 12, 2014

A much prettier swan pic for your blog … Caring Is Sharing

When I first heard my Mom’s diagnoses of Alzheimer’s, I was in denial. Fear of losing her totally and disbelief that it was happening to her occupied my mind and heart. My poems put my thoughts into words I read back to myself, helping me cope with her changing moods. I wanted to be near her. I wanted to make her days happy. I needed to know that she was safe. It’s been over 5 years since I first heard the words MOM HAS ALZHEIMER’S. I’ve written over 500 poems and self published 130 of those into a book, and working on a 2nd book. I’ve been so blessed, many have read my words, giving me comfort and identifying with our journey. I’m thankful to be able to spend time with Mom. I visit with her almost every day. We have fun together, even though I grieve my loss of my other Mother (as I say in my head), I’m enjoying this Mother. There are rough days, part of every time spent with her has rough times, mainly because of short-term memory loss, but I glean the good and savor it, tossing the bad into the abyss. I love this woman. Recently my sister Meta Lynn Wilder Knapp sent me a picture of the swan that survived Mom’s house fire in 2013, the one pictured on this blog. She has beautiful blooming flowers, like what Mom used to plant in her gardens, growing in the swan. Here is a much prettier swan pick for your blog, she writes to me. I stared at those words for a long time. I stared at the picture for a long time. It stirred my heart, my tears flowed. Thank you Meta for caring. It has given me food for thought. The constant mourning that I do anytime I’m with Mom is stressful. I read that stress in my poems. I’ll continue to lose her daily, and write accordingly, but the prettier pic illuminates my thoughts, and I want to share it with you all. We still have our Mother and I’m the lucky one to be able to spend time with her. I’m the lucky sibling, because I could, I am, and I know it, thank you Jesus.

Caring Is Sharing/ sg/ October 11, 2014

2014-10-10 20.11.55

Vulnerability

A vulnerable soul … stalked this night
Unkindness … waiting … in dim light
I call out … lending a helping hand
Unkindness … vanishes … unplanned
Arise … remove self … from this place
The vulnerable soul … knows not the chase
Expecting all to honor … set ways
Unbeknown … vulnerability stays.

Copyright/ Sheila Grimes/ September 10, 2014

WHAT A SEND OFF!

Evacuation … day … much havoc … surround
So many … heroes … compassion abounds
Some residents … amazing … calm under fire
Others were … strained … nervous ‘n wired
Firemen … policemen … nurses … aides
Family ‘n friends … Daingerfield’s brigade
Hughes springs … Lone Star … sirens blew
All … came to help … fast … impromptu
All is o.k. … said in all ears … proof in action
Subdue fears … food, medicine, mattresses too
Helpers de-stress … folks feeling … blue
It could have been worse … no lives were lost
Plus being summer … gone was Jack Frost
Dear Mother … bless her soul … hadn’t a clue
I find her … smiling … peek-a-boo!
Many hours passed … teams … electric ‘n gas
Made safe the way … to return … at last
My home towns … I’m honored to say
Johnny- on- the -spot … saved us that day!

Copyright/ Sheila Grimes/ September 2, 2014/

August 29, 2014 We were headed to Mom’s facility to pick her up and transport her to a new place. It was around 5PM. We were detoured away, finding out the facility had a gas leak/exploded and no electricity. The facility was evacuating the residents to Hughes Springs, TX, 6 miles away. Daingerfield had issues with the storm that had just passed through. Looking for Mother was stressful. Finally when I saw her in a bus window, I was in tears and she smiled at me! We’re very thankful for the fast action of the facility and all the firemen and policemen and EVERYONE THAT HAD ANY PART IN TAKING THESE RESIDENTS TO SAFETY. WHAT A SEND OFF!

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