Sometimes it is fairly easy to figure out what is going on. Sometimes it may seem impossible. But there is always a reason -- a reason other than, "It's the dementia."
My mother is a character from a Tennessee Williams play... but without a Southern accent. I am her second child and was born when she was 16 years old. Her childhood was cut short and never spoken of in a way that imparted a sense of safety or innocence. Each man she ran away with she hoped would rescue her from the last. She gave up every child she bore to some degree.
You have them right in front of you. Savor them. When you know someone you love has cancer, you are on notice. Fight hard to take advantage of each moment spent together.
Dad had a fall. The resulting injuries are horrific. The top of his femur smashed through his pelvis, shattering it. Picture a plate dropped onto a tile floor. That is my dad's pelvis. I've seen the images from the CAT scan, and they made me sick to my stomach. Doctors can do nothing to fix it.
Aging in place has become an important part of aging in America. Whether due to the struggling economy, comfort or deeper personal reasons, people simply do not want to spend their later years in nursing homes or assisted living facilities; they prefer to grow old in their own homes, usually with the help of their grown children.
From the very first scene when the aging monarch -- the King of all Britain -- decides to step down from the throne and divide his kingdom among his three daughters by testing their love for him, I knew something was very wrong. Who in their right mind would put their children in that situation?
A fall can happen any moment for us. Parkinson's isn't thinking not now, not today or wait until mom gets home. Falling is rapidly loosing control. I believe for families of Parkinson's sufferers, we all feel that lack of control whether we hit the ground physically or emotionally.
Who cares for the sandwich generation? In many cases, no one cares for this group of caregivers, who usually has the added burden of working a full-time job. Additionally, this group often has to juggle an unexpected hospitalization of their loved one with their career obligations.
The Genius of Marian is an intimate, poetic documentary about Pam White and her family as they all struggle to deal with Pam's Alzheimer's disease.
Many of us who served in Iraq and Afghanistan have survived injuries that would have killed us in previous wars, and while that is of course a cause for celebration, it also demands incredible sacrifices by our caregivers.
I'm a senior trying to care for an even more senior parent. There are lots of us. We are grandparents who are struggling through our "golden years," some of us still working far beyond age 65. Many of us are trying to be good "children" for our parents at the same time we are trying to be present in the lives of our grandkids. It's a tough, multi-generational balancing act.
Late one evening I was deeply immersed in writing a short story when I was startled by the phone ringing. Must be Ed I thought. But it wasn't. It wa...
According to the CDC, individuals 65 and older are more likely to be affected by these serious heat-related ailments, because their bodies don't adjust to the heat as well and because they are more likely to have a medical condition or take medications that impair their ability to handle heat.
I've found in my own experiences that people with Alzheimer's retain the desire -- and the capacity -- to love and be loved, which I believe is the defining feature of personhood.
Take advantage of these sources of help, and any others that come your way. Remember: The better you feel, the more you can help.
I'm on a 9-hour-plus train ride, from New York City to Pittsburgh. In an age of air travel, some might think me insane. But I had myriad reasons for c...