Today's post is kind of sad. We saw my mom last night and although it was a good visit, there was an element of sadness in it. She called me three times yesterday to come and see her. Frank and I went after he got home...why did she want us to come? She remember that some time ago...I told her when she quit working at Adams she could come and live with us....so I guess she was through working....because she had her stuff packed and was ready to go home with us last night. I did what I always do...dropped back and punted. I told her it was too cold and I was too sick. She bought it...but, added that I could come get her tomorrow. We have come full circle. We have come from trying to escape, to trying to get out to go on errands, to trying to quit work and move in with me. She told me she could not live alone...her house was too big. Elements of reality were evident in this conversation....then she asked if I knew where my father was...and reality vaporized before me. Ah the lot of a child with parent who suffers from dementia. Dementia rules my life now. I dream about it, research it, spend most waking moments thinking about it. I have never had to deal with it....until my mother. I have discovered in my searching for answers that dementia is the loss of mental functions -- such as thinking, memory, and reasoning -- that it can be severe enough to interfere with a person's daily functioning (like taking a bath). Dementia is not a disease itself, but rather a group of symptoms that are caused by various diseases or conditions. Symptoms can also include changes in personality, mood, and behavior. Dementia develops when the parts of the brain that are involved with learning, memory, decision-making, and language are affected by one or more of a variety of infections or diseases. So, with all this researching....I am finding....that dementia does not make any more sense than it did in the beginning. It is such a portrait of confusion. There should be tons of support groups out there...but there isn't. Our town has one....it meets for lunch...I teach school and have a lunch 22 minutes. That is not long enough to go out there and ask questions...I have discovered there are several of us on campus in various stages of dealing with parents who are aging....we talk at the water fountain, the copy room, the teacher mail room...anywhere we can hang out a shingle that says..."The Doctor is In." Yet, these are just people stuggling with the same disease I am struggling with...none of us have answers....but we do have hugs. Today will be one of those days...sigh,...Hello my name is Karen, and my mom has dementia.
I am a woman who wears many hats and loves them all. I am a singer - I sing with the group Still Magnolias. I was part of the original First United Methodist Church Arbor Praise Team until we moved. After 24+ years of teaching English 11 and Spanish I - II at Benjamin Russell High School I decided to take a job closer to home. I now teach Spanish I & 2 at Randolph Co. High School and Wadley. I thought I was getting close to retirement and looking forward to it, but decided to move my cheese and try something different. I am a preacher's wife and a preacher myself. My husband Frank is the pastor at Rock Mills United Methodist Church and I am the pastor at Midway (Wedowee). It has made our conversations interesting, to say the least.