by Sharron Warren

Archive for June, 2014

ANOTHER DAY IN PARADISE?

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It’s been said that aging and retiring are the “Golden Years.”  You should embrace them, be free, travel, and enjoy the grandkids.  If you’re lucky at my age you’re retired – living the dream.  Retiring because you want to is so much different that retiring when you HAVE to.  Oh, I still enjoy that I get to sleep as long as I want but I miss not renewing my nursing license since 1972.

I’ve been so blessed to have a good man who worked so hard that I didn’t need to work fulltime or part time – most of the time he asked me not to work.  “Stay home and enjoy yourself, make your jewelry, go shopping, have lunch with friends. ”  WOW, that sure sounded good a few years ago and I did them all!   Now that my “Golden Years” have arrived I find doing all of the above a little more difficult.  I’m so happy that I had those few years to be free and do what I wanted AND REMEMBER what I did!   I am still able to do all of the good things except my jewelry (which sits in 2 large red tubs in the garage) but it’s getting a little harder every week.

I want to have all the wonderful things a normal (whatever normal is) 66 year old wants but I am angry, depressed, feeling isolated and there is the fear – ever present.  The fear that keeps me awake at night.  The fear not only what tomorrow will bring but the fear of this disease robbing me of TOMORROW.  Will I be worse?  Will I forget more?  Will I get upset and make Tom suffer?

EASE meetings are wonderful but so much material is over whelming.  I read some and the other information is for later in the disease so I put it away.  Writing this BLOG helps immensely – like keeping a journal, which everyone knows is good for all people. 

I’ve still not gotten to the part of sharing my feelings with anyone but Tom.  Close family is small and all are busy with their own lives and as I’ve said before I have no friends close near by and living in a 55+ community probably doesn’t make me unique!! HA!!

For now Tom and I try to stay busy, enjoying the summer, planning mini vacations, dealing with the anger and the fear.  Tom knows that the ocean is very healing & cathartic for me so therefore we have beach trips planned for a week in June, August, September and a MONTH in Nov.  What a guy – this makes me so happy!

My grandkids make me shine with joy.  As they get older I try to love on them as much as possible because we all know what the teen years bring.  They bring me joy and I hope to never forget who they are and hope they will love me if I do.  

As I’ve said before reading this may not help you now and I hope you never experience Alzheimer’s but one never knows.  Please feel free to share this with your friends and family.  Maybe my journey will help someone who hasn’t told you that they have Early Stage Alzheimer’s.  They could be just like me and you’d never know.

 

Enjoy this beautiful June.  

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Realization is a Hard Pill to Swallow

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Realization is a hard pill to swallow

I believe we all know we are going to die – just a matter or where and when but it’s something most people do not obsess over or think of every day.  I saw my Mother on the decline road of Alzheimer’s and yes, that’s what she died of.

At a recent EASE class we had a physician speak on the cause of AD along with a few statistics to which he added at the end, “and then you die.”  I do not believe that he realized he was addressing 5 people with Early Stage Alzheimer’s and their Care Partners.  I was trying to hold it together as he read through the stats – feeling near tears for an hour.  After his closing remark I had to leave the room.  A few minutes later I found Tom and had a major meltdown. 

Fast forward a week or so – I see a commercial on TV about Alzheimer’s called “Two Lives” – very touching until the end when it shows the lady with AD dead in her bed and they say “and then you die.”  REALLY???  Off went my email to the AD Association for their less than sensitive commercial.  I found it on YouTube and saw that it was made over a year ago but since we DVR everything I had not seen it.  I find it so sad that an organization that is all about AD can support such an ad.  I sent a letter to the head of marketing and received a very nice response.  I commend her for responding so fast and her kind words.

 Yes, we all know that we will die but I’d like to live as long as I can just like you.  No reminders please.

For my friends and family:  I’d like to thank you again for all your support.  I want my son to know that I feel his love and appreciate that when we are together we don’t feel the need to talk about my condition but I know he will be there when I need him.  Family is important and there just isn’t enough of it for me.  I am distressed most evenings trying to sort so many things going through my mind. 

Tom’s support is loving and caring – just as he’s always been.  I am thankful that no one asks “So, how ARE you?”  On the other hand I wish I had one special person that I could talk to, someone that would understand, listen and reassure me………….a special person to go out to lunch with, one I would not have to be on my best behavior.  It sure gets tiring.

I am grateful for those who understand & I enjoy my good days.  I am loving this weather and looking forward to a few vacations.  Two will be at the beach this summer  – my “peaceful” place and another will be a month in Florida.  I LOVE vacations…they sooth my soul and for a short time I forget what is happening to my brain – tangles and plaque – BE GONE.

** Friends and family – I pray that your surgeries and illnesses will be lessened in a few weeks.  You know who you are and my prayers are always with you.

Until next month.

 

For Better or for Worse

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I have never been known for my patience – many will laugh and agree and some say “What?”  I’ve found through the years that there are many things you can hide from neighbors and occasional friends but those who really know you can see right through you. 

Tom wrote about the difficulty of grocery shopping and in recent weeks I’ve seen my stress level increase in that situation.  I do not do well with hordes of rude people (or large groups of any sort) running all over the store in every direction and going the wrong way – yes, the wrong way.  I go down isles as I do when I drive.  Between that and rude people taking on their phones the whole shopping experience is a disaster. That takes me back to my lack of patience and the realization that it is getting less and less. 

It seems like it’s the little things that we take for granted but when they are slowly fading away you realize how big they are.  I never thought grocery shopping would be so difficult but then I never thought remembering what I did two days ago would fly out of my head.

For better or worse – it is what it is!!