All posts by cm writes

About cm writes

I love to write and have done so since before my teens. I drove a truck for 16 years starting in 1975 and did no favors in paving the way for woman drivers. Mystery Shopping was a favorite of mine and still do that occasionally. Now I love writing about anything to do with the experiences of life that hopefully will help others in some way.

Is there a difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s? Does it matter?

Have you ever wondered if there is a difference between Alzheimer’s and Dementia? Does it even matter? Could it affect one of your loved ones or could it happen to you?

Some doctors say there are no differences and they use both Alzheimer’s and Dementia interchangeably. Some doctor’s find there are a few differences, but say they all end up in the stage of Alzheimer’s so it doesn’t matter what it is called. In the two articles in Lifescript, and ALZ.org there are varying opinions.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of severe mental deterioration (dementia) in the elderly. It has been estimated that 30% to 50% of people over 85 years old suffer from this condition.

Alzheimer’s begins with subtle symptoms, such as loss of memory, for names and recent events. It progresses from difficulty learning new information to a few eccentric behaviors to depression, loss of spontaneity, and anxiety. Over the course of the disease, the person gradually loses the ability to carry out the activities of everyday life. Disorientation, asking questions repeatedly, and an inability to recognize friends are characteristics of moderately severe Alzheimer’s. Eventually, virtually all mental functions fail. –

See more at: http://www.lifescript.com/health/ _non-alzheimers_dementia. See more at: http://www.lifescript.com/health/a-z/alternative-therapies  This information is from lifescript.com.

Dementia- Symptoms: Difficulty remembering recent conversations, names or events is often an early clinical symptom; apathy and depression are also often early symptoms. Later symptoms include impaired communication, poor judgment, disorientation, confusion, behavior changes and difficulty speaking, swallowing and walking.

Revised guidelines for diagnosing Alzheimer’s were published in 2011 recommending that Alzheimer’s be considered a slowly progressive brain disease that begins well before symptoms emerge.

Brain changes: Hallmark abnormalities are deposits of the protein fragment beta-amyloid (plaques) and twisted strands of the protein tau (tangles) as well as evidence of nerve cell damage and death in the brain.

Learn more about Alzheimer’s disease.   Above is the use of the two used interchangeably? This information is taken from Alz.org

Mom lived with Alzheimer’s, I took care of all her needs for 16 years. I live with my husband who has dementia. Once you have lived with both of them, you can feel the variances, you can see the transformations, and I’ve had to be creative to adjust to those modifications in his personality.

Alzheimer’s may seem dramatic at times to those who are the caretakers, it can be and I’ve dealt with that too. Each time there was a turn in my mom, it was a sad thing. She may have lost her friends names. It was embarrassing for her and she began to stay home more. This was after I placed her in a really nice assisted living facility only a few miles from me so I could visit her every day and spend a few hours with her each day.

In dementia the differences are far more challenging, they are far more heart wrenching. Dementia has a face that pops up time and again; it’s ugly, destructive and rears its head with more destruction than the last time. This is a disease that robs your loved ones of their life skills, and their very lives.

The saddest day I had with my mom was when she asked me if she was going to forget me too. I couldn’t stand there and lie to her. With tears in my eyes … well, you’ll have to read the next article to find the answers.

The saddest day in the life of a person with dementia I can only guess. Each time Bill slips, it’s been more devastating than the last. It’s not just one person that needs to adjust; my husband is also going through something that he cannot control. A person has to adjust. This series of articles I call “Face of Dementia.” will take you through the changes, adjustments, tears, and laughter during dementia. A man who used to build houses, he was a draftsman; he was handy and could fix anything. This and a lot more changed when dementia hit.

Just like the doctors above; some people believe there are no differences between the two conditions. If you would like to visualize the truth about them, then read this series, “Face of dementia.” they are really far apart.

Whatever they lose, you have to find a way to deal with it. Each time the ugly monster shows its face, you can’t just turn away and pretend it isn’t there; no, you have to deal. with it.

 

You have to find a way to leave  his dignity intact  while the struggle continues

to go on and attacks. Not only dealing with your own emotions the effects of that ugly face at the same time.  Remember, the caretaker is not the only one dealing with some strong                                                                                                                                                        while. The ight goes on with not only dealing with your own emotions; and the effects of that ugly face of dementia at the same time. Remember, Bill has feelings too, and we don’t know how deep his frustrations are and how he feels in an upside down world he finds himself in everyday. He is in a world that makes no sense to him. You have to let him know that you are there everyday, you are within range, and he is able to see you in an instant. While thinking of these things and carrying each one out, you must treat him as an adult, plus leave him his dignity.

 

 

cm writes

Remember

The word “Remember” can invoke many thoughts to each of us. You may even wonder where to begin. I’m sure that each of us could write a book on our own memories. I’m only thinking of the first thing that this precious word makes me want to write.

I remember the reason I fell in love with my husband. We lived in Colorado at the time and I remember the first conversation I heard him have with his mother. (His end of course.) The gentle tone in which he spoke to his mother reminded me how children are supposed to obey their parents. It made me remember that the reason we obey is because we love and respect them. He’d laugh Continue reading Remember

Downhill Again?

This is another story of about the feelings of the one taking care of a person weighed down with dementia. This is a two person journey from beginning to end. What I’ve seen in Bill is the sadness of losing each skill, each thought, each piece of him to oblivion. I’m not really morose, or a negative person, but this is a sad condition of the mind.

I’ve been with Alzheimer’s people and Dementia so much these past 20 years or so that I forget what really is happening to the person. When you are with a person with such a condition, perhaps every day, you don’t see the gradual change. Others do see the gradual decline.

To those who take care of these ones, it is that all the suddenness of this decline that comes in one swoop. Again, you look at your loved one and realize this seems like he has suddenly gone downhill again. To me it feels as if it has been sudden that his thoughts and speech won’t come together, if at all. I remember the thoughts of his heart wanting to come out, but they were stuck. The thoughts were there, the memories are there, but the words are not.

He struggles to get the thoughts out and it hurts me to the point of my heart breaking in two. As he tries to form the words or remember his thought, the look of desire in his eyes I know that he has something important to say to me. The unwillingness of his mouth to form the words that have already gone into oblivion and as the thought itself enter the doors of extinction, we look at each other helplessly.

I can only hug him and tell him that I love him. Then nothingness fills the void of silence.

In the meantime, his son called us I’m not sure what the objection was, but he was mad at me and he told me that he was very angry with me. He thinks that his dad should be down there with him where he could care for him properly and he could see his grandchildren. I started to cry, and I told him he has a right to be angry and it was OK to be mad. His dad found his voice, grabbed the phone and let him know a few things that his son is not aware of. One was that he was not happy with him that he got me upset.

That was only one small thing that we have to work with. Bill has to remember that his son has not had to deal with older people and never with Alzheimer’s and Dementia. It is a shock for him to see his dad like this, and he doesn’t see it as bad as it really is. Thankfully there is no one else on bill’s side of the family that we have to hold their hand and deal with this too.

When you look at this, it comes down to the importance of the relationship that Bill and I have built over the years that is getting us through this. My sister said it all when she said that when you get old, all you have is your family to take care of you.

As for me? I’m just plugging along like everyone else is and taking it one day at a time.

Here I thought that this was going to be another story of my feelings of taking care of my husband, but it turned into something else and that is okay too.

 

 

Zing

Zing

The word today is “zing.” Take away the obvious synonyms which are repetitive of the synonyms of “zing” and these are “vitality”, “energy”, “vigor”, “verve”, “animation”, “vivacity”, and “vivaciousness” which is just another form of the word “vivacity”. Take these away and let’s see what is left of the synonyms of zing after the repetitive synonyms of zing have been eliminated. First; let’s salvage some of the synonyms of zing which are not repeated and they are “dynamism” which we will talk about later. (Remember we took away the repetitive synonyms that just repeat the same words to describe the word ZING) and “punch” is the other non-repetitive synonym. With that out of the way, let’s take one of the repetitive synonyms which I eliminated but now I’m going to give the repetitive synonym “vitality” back to this lesson which also has its’ own repetitive synonyms and these are “liveliness”, “energy”, “vivacity”, “vigor”, “animation”, and “verve”. Along with the repetitive synonyms of “vitality” the non-repetitive synonyms include but are not limited to “strength”, “life”, “get-up-and-go”, “buoyance”, “joie de vivre”, (which by the way means “joy of living”. It’s French) The word “dynamism” is not repetitive as a synonym of zing, but I repeated it just to give the meaning of it and that is “vigorously active, forceful, and energizing quality”, especially as the hallmark of somebody’s personality or approach to a task. “Punch” is a non-repetitive synonym of zing and I believe that it is self-explanatory. Now, to continue with the synonyms of “zing”; another repetitive synonym is the synonym “vivacity”. If you’ll try and remember that “vivacity” and “vivaciousness” I crossed off entirely since “vivaciousness” is a repetitive synonym of the word “zing” and is also repetitive because “vivaciousness”, if you’ll remember, is only another form of the word “vivacity”. But since you mentioned it, its’ repetitive synonyms are “liveliness”, “animation”, “verve”, “energy”, “vivaciousness”, and “vitality”. Did anyone get the meaning of “verve”? The unrepeated synonyms of “vivacity” which I shouldn’t even have in here since “vivacity” and “vivaciousness” are just different tenses of the same word and the unrepeated synonyms of “vivacity” are: “high-spiritedness”, “exuberance”, “cheerfulness”, “live”, “chirpiness”, and “sparkle”. I just love the words, “exuberance” and “chirpiness” don’t you? Hang in there we are almost done with this lesson. Now, that only leaves one non-repetitive synonym of “zing” and that is the word “dynamism” and this only has 3 synonyms repeated under it. Those words are, “vitality”, “vigor” and “energy”. The ones that are not repeated synonyms I especially love and those synonyms are “zip”, “drive”, and “enthusiasm” and get this; to round it all off the last synonym is “ZING”.

Twinkle

Twinkle

Even though it has only been a couple of weeks, it seems as if it has been a year since I have added anything new to my blog, in fact, I have added nothing at all to the words that meander down the road to insignificance. At the thought of those words, you can tell that I’m feeling a little melancholy today as I have the past days. Otherwise, had I not been in this state of mind, I might put on a smile as I forge onward to begin again on my blog.

I used to see a twinkle in his eye

And I knew that his smile was nigh.

My expectations left me high

Just waiting for that twinkle in his eye.

 

Yesterday I knew this was to be true

And now I’m not sure what to do

That smile has lingered like the dew

Oh for the eyes to twinkle a new.

 

Now his eyes just always look blank

My eyes saw nothing and my heart sank.

I looked around and I began to feel dank

But I wanted to be back into the rank

 

Of that beautiful and precious smile in his eyes

It’s called a twinkle and follows his guise

I’ve been waiting oh please give me that surprise

First a twinkle and then that smile I idolize.

 

My heart is broken but still I wait

Because I know it is there, I am his mate

For a while now it is usually late

But it’s there it’s personal, and I need not debate.

Not as Well as Expected

While Bill’s son has come and gone, my head is left spinning. What I can say for J is that he has not had to deal with older people and especially when they begin to have health issues thrust upon them. He got here and I had already picked his dad up and brought him home. I had texted him earlier and told him that I would like to go to a friend’s house and let him spend time alone with his dad which didn’t set too well with him. If I was reading between the lines correctly, his text was something like this. I guess I have to figure it out myself. The answer was actually yes, but I felt badly about it and agreed to stay.

The first night I had J bring him back to the nursing home. He was quite upset about the choice of that home and he let me know that when he got to his hotel. I would rather have his dad somewhere else too, but this is a small town, and the choices are limited. Bill is younger than many of the residents there. To J it looked like a Hospice ward full of people just waiting to die. I had to agree with him on that point. I had him meet me at the nursing home in the main lobby. We had to wait until the staff got out of their meeting to talk to anyone.

When Tracy got out of the meeting I got her attention to come and talk to us. I had her explain to J that he was invited out a couple of days a week to do some activities in the main section with other residents. We talked about getting some Continue reading Not as Well as Expected

Sunday Was the Best

Last Sunday began the same as all my visits to see Bill or pick him up for Sunday meeting. We got ready for meeting and got there early enough to visit with everyone. He was a little angst-ridden to begin with, but as soon as our dear friends saw him, they went and said hello to him. There is one little boy about 2 1/2 years that always runs up to him yelling, “Bill, Bill” and throwing his little arms up in the air to signal Bill to pick him up.  Oh what a delight it is to see both of their eyes light up.

That is how our Sunday began. After the meeting we went with our outstanding friends to grab a bite to eat, then said that we would see them later that afternoon at the farewell party being given for a couple leaving for a different language congregation about 20 miles from here. That may sound silly since they are only going 20 miles, but it is a great gap in the time we will be able to spend with them. This congregation is being set up so the Tsurkeese (probably spelled badly) can learn about Continue reading Sunday Was the Best

Friends are Still Friends

     

Come as your favorite Bible character
Come as your favorite Bible character

Bill and I went for breakfast at the hut as we do on most Fridays. The pain of separation is almost unbearable for Bill at this time. I’ve only taken him out twice this week and visited him once. I understand the way he feels because I would feel the same way if the situation was the other way around. I too would question someone’s love if that person put me in a place full of unknown old people and I couldn’t understand why.

 

As he sees it; and truly feels himself to be the same person he always was. Constantly he wonders why we can’t be together all the time. He can’t understand why he is not able to be with me at home again. Our tears fall easily when we first see each other, but this morning I was able to wait for my tears to begin. Off we went to breakfast with our friends.             Continue reading Friends are Still Friends

How Could I Show the Depth of My Love?

Depth

It’s funny in a facetious way how my profundity of love for my husband would be tested in such a way such as it is at this time. While I was growing up, there was no real love in our Copy of Copy of mom and dadfamily. If it wasn’t for my step-father who I have always felt was my real father I would not have a speck of love within me. He put us, his family first. He never cared what time we called or what he was doing at that time; his secretary was given instructions to put his family through to him even if he was in a meeting. That’s how he thought of us; we were his family.

Since he married my mom when I was eleven years old, it was almost too late for real ron ann col 56family love to shine through and actually recognize it as being something special or even important. My real father had no love for us kids, and a future series on growing up with no love will bear out that fact. So I virtually grew up within a family of only jealousy and indifference of each other. We felt little, if any, love for each other as kids the same way our mother showed little love if any to us.

I had always known the words in the bible that said, “God is love.” I couldn’t grasp that idea and it was a mystery to me. It was something I knew nothing about at all. I just knew  those words were true because they were in the bible and I have always believed what the bible said even if I didn’t understand it. In response to these words that always bothered me since I was a child, I wanted to know what love was and where I could go to find it. When I grew up I went looking for love; so please forgive me for the following cliché.

Yes, as the song goes, “I was looking for love in all the wrong places.” I went through that scene not knowing exactly what I was looking for but it definitely wasn’t there in bars. I couldn’t find it among the drugs of the hippies and their love and peace slogans. Then I thought I might find love out on the road while I was driving a truck. I quickly Continue reading How Could I Show the Depth of My Love?