Memories Aren’t Forever

It’s often said that we always have our memories even after the occasion or event has finished or the people involved have left us. However I’ve come to realise more and more in the last few weeks that this really isn’t true for all of us.

Confused?

I’m thinking about dementia and Alzheimer sufferers.

As many of you will know my Dad was diagnosed with vascular dementia a number of months ago, plus one of my aunt’s who suffers from Alzheimer’s, now lives in a care house. Initially my Dad just had trouble remembering people names and some events from a while ago, however over the last few months Mum, hubby, Dad’s doctor and me have already noticed a huge deterioration in my Dad.

To be honest Mum has told me all the things Dad’s been doing or not doing because of his condition, however because I’ve spent a lot more time with them in the last few weeks while I’ve been off work, I’ve realised jut how bad he is. Take a couple of days ago for example, we were going out to get some shopping and stop for a coffee while we were out, however before we went out, I had to help Dad zip up his jacket as he didn’t know how to fasten it anymore – That really upset me.

A few days ago, Mum got in the morning to find dad wasn’t in bed…she found him downstairs in the living room, looking out the window…he was watching for Mum coming home. Dad thought it was the middle of the day and Mum was out somewhere!

Mum’s having to do just about everything for Dad these days and we’re having to explain everything over and over again to him as after letting him something he still doesn’t remember. It’s getting to a stage now that Mum’s getting more and more reluctant to leave Dad on his own in the house while she’s out, as she’s frightened he’ll feel dizzy and have an accident when she’s not around.

So where am I going with this? Well all I wanted to say is, don’t take your memory and/or your friends/family for granted, as you never know how quickly you may lose the ability to remember your past or even your friends/family.

Life is precious, so make the most of every minute you have, especially those you spend with your friends and family.

9 comments

  1. I am very sorry about your father; how painful this is for you and your family. Life is so very short, so very precious…each day a gift. I do not have a parent with Dementia, however, we recently lost two daughters (18yo) in a car accident. I am trying to journal each day as if it’s my last; a hopeful chest of memories that my family may one down pass on. God Bless everyday that you share with your dad.

    April

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    1. So sorry to hear of your recent lost. You must be devastated losing your 2 daughters so suddenly and in such awful circumstances. I hope you manage to find some peace in the knowledge that they no longer feel any pain now th are with God.
      I pray your daily journal may also offer you some solace at this difficult time.
      Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. God bless.

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  2. When I read your blog Dorothy it reminds me so much of all the pain we as a family went through whilst Chalmers was ill and yes its hard to remember these times as they are so painful for those who watch the deterioation in our loved ones.
    I very often still have many ‘bad days’ but coupled with that I am so glad that I met-married and had my family with Chalmers and all the blessings that that brought to us. These are memories that i treasure and you are so right to remind us to not take our loved ones or even friends for granted because we dont know the minute when this will be taken fromus.
    Comtinuing to think of you all at this time God bless

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    1. Thanks Jean. I know you can relate very closely to what we’re experiencing just now with both Aunt Mae and Dad, so thank you for your continued support and prayers, we do appreciate it greatly. .x

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  3. Dearest Dot
    As you know I lost my Father who had Vascular Dementia on 18th December and my Mother who had Alzheimers on 18th January. It has been such a hard time for the past year, knowing Mum couldn’t quite remember who I was but being so glad that she was always pleased to see me, and Dad who with his type of dementia declined so quickly. Having to put them into care was so hard. And although I knew they were both very poorly, their passing has been devastating. Life is so very different now, a big hole in my life. God bless you Dot and may He continue to carry us both xxx

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    1. Thank you Angie. I know how difficult these last few months in particular have been for you. I can’t imagine how difficult is was for you losing both your parents in such a short space of time. I wonder if it’s the vascular dementia that causes the speedy decline as it seems a bit of a coincidence we’ve both noticed that in our dad’s.
      Continuing to pray for you and your family as to try to come to terms with the emptiness that’s been left by the death of your parents. I know we can get through this with God’s help, and each other’s support.
      Take care. .x

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  4. Mom took care of Dad through his Alzheimer’s and then she, too, was diagnosed. She is still taking care of him as no one else could. Her patience and love shine in all that she does for him. I believe her own Alzheimer’s is a mixed blessing – it allows her to forget just how difficult it was to get Dad dressed or motivated to get to the dining room for their next meal, and basic daily needs. The constant struggle to get him to do things involves repeating instructions dozens of times, (“Put your foot in the shoe. Put your foot in the shoe. Put your foot in the shoe.”) Her own Alzheimer’s makes her forget from this time to the next so her patience never seem to flag. When I am involved in their care, I take over trying to get Dad to do things. I don’t know if it gives Mom the break she needs to refresh, or if it’s just because she is faced with a ‘new’ environment and needs her own faculties to deal with the strangeness of being in the store or doctor’s office. It is great to read what others are going through with their Alzheimer’s afflicted Parent or loved one. keep writing – it helps the rest of us stay strong, too.

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    1. Thanks for sharing your experience. I’m glad you find some comfort and help in reading about others going thru similar circumstances to your own. Stay strong with Gods help and the support of other we can all get thru these tough times.

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