The only thing I can say about October is that it was a busy & pretty awesome month. As the Grateful Dead put it:
“Sometimes the light’s all shinin’ on me, Other times I can barely see.
Lately it occurs to me what a long, strange trip it’s been.”
Because of many great friends, family and neighbors I more than exceeded my Walk fundraising goal, met new people, learned how caring and generous people can be and realized that 66 yrs. might not be that old but boy was I tired. This was a good type of tired.
I want to thank our good friends from Charlottesville who came for the weekend and got stuck volunteering at the walk. You are both so special. Now my fingers are crossed that one of my raffle ticket buyers will WIN that beautiful Red Camry!! If I win I will offer FREE rides – HA!!! Good reason to come visit me.
Along with the fundraising came the difficulty of keeping track of ticket sales, donations and so many appointments. Since my math skills have declined even using a spreadsheet to just type names and numbers is difficult but I needed this to help me thank everyone. Twenty one Bravelets were bought from my site therefore $210 was donated to the Alzheimer’s Association!! These people got a beautiful bracelet and $10 from each one was donated to the ALZ Association. This is a wonderful site and you can still buy the bracelets as they come in many colors and say “Be Brave”…………great for birthday, illness or Christmas presents.
I have one GREAT cheerleader who has brought me up, worked tirelessly and rallied my neighborhood to give and to walk. She knows who she is – so thank you sweet lady. We are already planning new things for next year’s walk!! But for now I believe we will both take a break and rest.
I know all of you are busy – life is just like that. Even if you are retired you stay busy but maybe a more fun type of busy. Just a few things that kept me hopping: Doctor & Dental visits, MRI – all is well and clear. This is good but means that my diagnosis is right on. Not that I’d hoped for another problem but some problems can be “fixed” and Alzheimer’s can not, for now, but I have great hope for the future.
Also this month I did a radio interview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YNsTK19_Ltg&feature=youtu.be
This was actually really fun!! Kevin Mills from WMBG 740 is adorable, funny and easy to talk to. Tom also did an interview that I hope will be out soon. I gave a talk of why I walk to a group of wonderful people at Chambrel, which is an independent and assisted living facility. In January they are opening a new “Memory Unit” which is so needed. Their staff is wonderful and my talk went well. I also talked at the Williamsburg Walk – what an honor. I am so thankful that I can still do these talks. Many can not and I know my time will come but I can not dwell on that – live for the day.
I also learned that you can not go backwards – once it’s done, it’s done………..can’t get that word back, can’t retake or even take that picture, can’t redo that speech. It’s always been like that for all of us but for me it’s more difficult..…things I wanted documented were not done – upsetting my applecart & upsetting my day. I need to be more diligent if I want it right.
A few weeks ago we went to a wedding where I got to dance with my favorite Grandson. We had a great day. Went to IKEA and while shopping I left my cart 3 times to go look at something and then grabbed what I thought was my cart and took off……….how embarrassing………….even though I only got caught once it gave us something to laugh about later. To make the month even better we went to lunch with a special cousin and her new husband – always fun to catch up and gossip.
My beautiful Tree of Life is from a very special friend. I hope I get to wear it for a long time and she knows why!!
A little education for those who tell me that I look and talk perfectly well:
Very subtle changes in the first stage of Alzheimer’s disease. The family usually does not recognize anything is wrong or attributes it to stress, lack of sleep, job, getting older, etc. Patients are very good at compensation for their deficiencies in the first stage. They may do very well is social situations and in a normal nonspecific conversation. It is only when you ask them a very specific question, such as how old they are, what year it is, what date it is, what did you have for dinner, etc., that you can tell something might not be right.
Persons are very aware in the first stage of Alzheimer’s disease that they cannot remember. They may display symptoms of depression over their memory loss in the first stage.
Physical Changes – very few. They look physically fine. May be in perfect health and go out and run a mile, come home, and forget where they put their tennis shoes.
When you see me out and about remember that I am trying very hard to keep it together but I am not like you. I’ve learned to compensate. Remember me like this when things take a turn for the worse.
Once again thank you all for your love and support. When you think and pray for me please remember my Care Partner & Husband Tom as he is living this with me. Bless his Southern heart!
Keep the thoughts and prayers coming.