We quit playing music on a cellphone in a fanny pack on Lynne. She takes it off. It goes dead. Staff on multiple shifts & forget to put it on her. Some songs bother her. Other residents take her cellphone. I stress about it. Any ideas for us? #alzauthors#alzheimers#caregiver#endalz
Let’s dance. Walked in her apartment playing a song with repeated refrains: Carpenter’s: Rainy days and Mondays … Held hands, swayed & I sang the first refrain. She laughed, moved with the refrain, and sang the refrain. #alzauthors#alzheimers#caregiver
Monday: “Hi Lynne, it’s Carol” Big hug. I named Lynne’s boys in two photographs. Lynne focused on each name. She reached out to Carol, smiled, & said, “Boys” Carol said, ”Yes, I have two boys. You have 3 boys” Lynne said, “Yes” Lynne rarely speaks words now. #alzauthors#caregiver
Head down. Bends over every few steps. Plods. Stops. Speaks with an unintelligible purpose. Hugs me. Can’t see chair in front of her. My emotions surge with respect, courage, sorrow, doubt, strength, and deeper love. She gives me her all every day. #alzauthors#alzheimers#caregiver
Photo by Imman Wegmann, Unsplash
Found Lynne on her knees, helpless. “Want to get up and walk” Yes
Walked. I passed gas, lots of loud gas. “Sorry, I should have left those at the apartment.” She laughed
Danced to Allison Krause’s – GOODBYE AND SO LONG TO YOU. We sang
“Gotta go. OK?” Yes
Inside Alzheimer’s (Rev Ed.) author Nancy Pearce. Excellent book on how to learn to visit people with dementia. She provides many practical ways to overcome fears and learn skills to “focus on the now” to experience the joys of visiting #alzauthors#alzheimers#caregiver#endalz
Nancy and LynnrR’s visit 1/2/23: Lynne was in a happy place and did lots of giggles and smiles. We ran into her twins when we visited. Fun to catch up with these awesome dudes and see sweet moments of connection. They are twin towers of love
In August Lynne said YES after the 3rd time I asked Lynne if she wanted to grant her twins power of attorney to backup Dad. Lynne convinced the Notary she understood. The sensitive, caring men visited yesterday, confirming again, she made a good decision. They went one better by visiting me afterward to give me a gift of the top-of-the-line desk chair similar to the ones their dad got for them. They fit them to their frames. The knew I needed to replace my video gaming chair.
Lynne adapts to dementia by reducing lived space, like her calm peaceful quiet 2-BR apt. She walked in 4 rooms. “Hi, sit with me on the bed.” Opened her mouth to ask for a choc mint. Alexa played Lyle Lovett. She sang, danced, smiled, & slowly revived.
Smaller Space Longer Time worked. This a good meta-analysis of the importance of giving her smaller, peaceful, quiet lived space when possible: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5795848/
While I was with Carol, friends Nancy & Rauch cuddled with sleepy Lynne in her single bed. Recalled 20 friends in a slumber party in a massive snowstorm. She laughed a lot & ate a bounty of meals & snacks. “2-hour sweet visit.” Soul-stirring blessing for Dad.
#alzheimers #dementia #alzheimersawareness #caregiver #seniorcare #dementiacare #caregiving #alzauthors#alzheimers#caregiver