FOR GREGORY. He was not a VICTIM of ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE, he was a HERO!
PLEASE NOTE: Even though this blog is now dormant there are many useful, insightful posts. Scroll back from the end or forward from the beginning. Also, check out my writer's blog. Periodically I will add posts here if they provide additional information about living well with Dementia / Alzheimer's Disease.
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Late hours of the night or wee hours of the morning.
"There. Look. What is that?"
"Nothing, you are just dreaming. Nothing to worry about. Go back to sleep."
"Are you sure. Are you sure."
"Yes, everything is OK," stroking his cheek, holding his hand.
We both settle down and fall back to sleep.
In the beginning these events used to disturb me and I could not get back to sleep. Now they have become expected and for some reason that makes them easier with which to deal.
Telling Gregory that "You're only dreaming" is easier and kinder than addressing the fact that he has begun to hallucinate. I am not sure what he is seeing, and to him it is real ... but I can be calm and assure him that everything is under control. He is able to trust me and fall back asleep.
There is the possibility that he wakes and is not able to separate his dream from reality. If this is the case we may not have hallucination but something none-the-less real for him. Again, calm support and comforting does the trick.
More difficult, but still now expected and therefore tolerable, is when he knocks an imaginary something off my sleeping shoulder bringing me fully awake quickly. Sometimes picking something out of my hair is either a service or an hallucination, but either way I react calmly.
To me it is the unexpected and unknown that freaks me out. Once I can rely on something, even if it isn't pretty, I can better deal with it. Once I can begin, at least, to understand what is happening or what might be going on in his mind, I can better deal with it.
A third aspect in better dealing is to not allow myself to worry about the future. I know it will get worse. I know the "rules" and "understandings" will change, but that is tomorrow. Tonight I'll just get back to sleep, holding my honey's hand, and sending him thoughts of love.
Monday, July 30, 2012
I always apologize when I loose patience, am disrespectful, fly off the handle towards Gregory by saying, "I'll try to do better next time."
I think my chance of success is better than his, but we try to be good to each other.
Thursday, July 26, 2012
Sometimes he will say, "I just don't feel right" and I take that to mean he might be out of sorts. I ask him if he wants to talk about it (euphemistically since he really can't "talk" about things anymore") to show him I care.
I make a habit of touching him as often and as much as I can. I put my hand on his knee, I hold his hand, I caress his face with my open palm like his mother used to do. I feel that keeping in touch in this way also then comes in handy when he is upset.
Of course when he is out of sorts it affects my emotions but I am able to keep "up" and optimistic and supportive to help offset his downs.
The thing that bothers me more is how my emotions affect him. When I am impatient, angry, frustrated, confused, out of control, rarely raging ... I am sure that my facial and body language communicate my emotions to him and that in turn has an effect on him.
I am working on being better able not so much to hide my emotions but to keep them in tow and find other ways to deal with our day to day interaction difficulties.
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Been a very busy time for us. We had approximately 40 people here for Gregory's July 4th birthday celebrations. He took in a nice haul of birthday dark chocolate and bathed in the attention and love that our friends and family brought with them. We brought in Italian Beef & Sausage on French Bread with au juice, mostacholli in a marinara sauce, and cole slaw from a local Italian Restaurant in the area. The chocolate on chocolate birthday cake was from COSTCO, $19.99, to great reviews. Fireworks were viewed from the living room, balcony, or lower level roof top garden. G and I were so exhausted that at the end of the evening, we put the food in the refrigerator and hit the bed only to be greeted by the mess in the morning.
Click here for link to: GREGORY MAIRE: Studies in Color & Form
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Monday, July 16, 2012
Click here to see Lincolnwood's announcement
Sunday, July 15, 2012
Thursday, July 12, 2012
A study of a rare gene mutation that protects people against Alzheimer’s disease provides the strongest evidence yet that excessive levels of a normal brain substance, beta amyloid, are a driving force in the disease — bolstering hopes that anti-amyloid drugs already under development might alter the disease’s course or even prevent it.