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."
Choose to be brave and purposeful with your time and your love. Put yourself in another's situation and think of things that might ease their burden. As my father used to say, "What each one of us needs is what each one of us needs to give."
Ed, my beloved Romanian life partner, had Alzheimer's for the last seven years of our 30-year relationship and was living at Cincinnati's Alois Alzhei...
When I returned to Boston from Rome, where I served as U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican for almost five years, I was getting older and now had larger family obligations -- 17 grandchildren. But I still found the time and energy to do all the things I had and wanted to do.
They -- we -- aren't seen as a legitimate minority group because there's no visible or obvious characteristics that bind us. We're not joined by race or sexual preference or even socio-economic class, though most of us have precious little money.
People with Alzheimer's may have great difficulty figuring out the simplest activities. The following story illustrates that poignantly.
Even though he had forgotten about the move, the sound of his voice asking to go home reverberated in my head and troubled me for days.
It's not easy for anyone when the time to put away the car keys is reached: the time when he or she has to relinquish that great worldwide symbol of independence -- driving a car. It happens for some at earlier ages than for others. Sight starts to fail and driving at night becomes increasing difficult. Reflexes slow and the foot moves slower from the gas to the brake.
All to often a woman's time out of the office during her childbearing years is compounded by the time she takes off later to care for her parents and she suffers a significant lost in wages as a result.
Having lost my father and grandfather to heart disease, I should've been more aware of my own heart health. I shouldn't have smoked three packs a day for 18 years. Just because I played a lot of tennis and "looked healthy," I shouldn't have believed that proved I was healthy.
Through all the emotions churning in my heart and the thoughts whipping through my mind, part of me continues to feel detached, as if watching this life-changing story unfold from the outside. Maybe it is trying to protect the rest of me from the pain I might feel if I allow my guard down.
Until we're willing to deal with the fact that young people are sexual people who need more realistic, developmentally appropriate guidance when it comes to sexual expression and satisfaction, the situation is not going to change.
One day my dear friend, Connie, was coming to visit Ed with me. I was an hour and a half early because I wanted to make sure he was awake, shaved and ...
Imagine how exciting it would be to design a whole new system of care for older adults -- entirely from scratch. You'd be working with a clean slate, unencumbered by the temptation to retain old ways of operating, simply because 'we've always done it this way.'
There might be no clearer metaphor for mental clarity than that clock: we describe the timing of the very punctual among us as being like a "Swiss watch."
We started our visit by talking about Ruth's experience dancing with soldiers at an Army base during World War II. She tells me that story every time I visit, and I enjoy it each time as much as the time before.