November 1, 2017 – Being a caregiver is sometimes thankless, and sometimes a blessing. Looking back, I wouldn’t trade taking care of my mama near the end of her life with Alzheimer’s for anything. While we were in the middle of it, it was overwhelming and all consuming. The patient depends on you for their well being and happiness. Learning as much as you can from other caregivers helps more than anything else. That is what today’s blog is all about!
Original Blog: In today’s post I am sharing “Stories from Caregivers.” Every caregivers story is as different as every Alzheimer’s patient’s story. These are just a few stories with many more out there on the internet for your to search for and review. These types of stories allowed me a look into the future of what care giving held for me when mama was with us. They also gave me such comfort that I was not alone and there were people I could reach out to that really understood. I hope today’s edition will give you that same comfort.
Ann Napoletan lost her mother to Alzheimer’s in 2012 and blogs about her experience as a caregiver. In particular, about the cruelty and helplessness this disease brings.
Lori La Bey, a family caregiver to her mother and the founder of Alzheimer’s Speaks, has been blogging about her story since 2009. She knows firsthand the challenges of caring for a parent with Alzheimer’s and being a working parent herself.
Living with Alzheimer’s, A Day in the life of Ralph Hergert:
A Day in the Life of an Alzheimer’s Caregiver by Blake Butler
Growing up in a close family, Michele DeSocio learned about the power of love at a very young age and still maintains that she is happiest when with her loved ones. In 1999, she became caregiver to her mom Jean DelCampo. Michele found her voice as an advocate volunteering for Memory People, an online support and awareness group for dementia.
A link to several caregiver and family member stories on alz.org (Alzheimer’s Association):
Bert’s blog “Had a Dad” is about her father’s 1253-day journey through Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) and her feelings about it.
Quotes about Alzheimer’s from the”Had a Dad” website:
“The cost of Alzheimer’s? Everything you ever owned, everything you ever thought you would get, and things you never even thought about.”
“It’s a long, slow slide into oblivion, with no brakes.”
“If this was a paper journal, the ink would be running with tears.”
“Imagine a really beautiful, perfect statue, left out in the wind and rain for centuries, to be worn away, until it’s only retained the shape of a person, not any of the individuality. That’s what Alzheimer’s did to my father. It wore him away, all the sharp edges and crisp points that made him Bob, who loved his family and his pets and his raspberry bushes, and turned him into a fearful person with a vague and confused stare.”
“It’s a nasty disease, surrounded by shadows and small, largely unseen tragedies.”–Terry Pratchett
My medical update:
On Tuesday of this week I gave six vials of blood for the numerous blood tests my brain doctor ordered to see if I have deficiencies in any vitamins and minerals that may be causing my brain atrophy. I’ve also been able to obtain MRI from North Oaks Hospitals as far back as 1994 and will bring them to the doctor when I see him next week. He’ll be able to compare them as time went along and also to the newest MRIs. I’ll let you guys know after that visit what he comes up with.
Until next time,
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