Although I have not been posting, I have been writing. I've been writing down my thoughts and memories of Mom's dementia from its beginnings. It is such a big thing in my life right now, but writing about it has been difficult. Oh, I want to write about it. I want to get it out like some rant building up inside me, but it sometimes seems too personal - maybe more personal for my mom. Maybe it would sound like I was not respectful of her and her privacy. In no way would I want to show disrespect or seem like I am sharing our dirty laundry. Nor would I want to seem to make fun or laugh at Mom. The thing about dementia/Alzheimer is that it is a mental illness. People say and do things they would never do in their right minds. It is not just their memory loss that is the problem, although that is a big problem. Their whole personality changes. They are often angry, frustrated, depressed, childish, etc. Things you have explained to them before are new to them every few days. We hash through the same problems over and over with my mom getting angry at us. She doesn't remember why she cannot drive any longer. She does not remember why we took over her banking. She doesn't understand why she needs assistance in living - can no longer live alone. It is not just memory loss, it is her thought process that does not always work. I don't want to make my mom seem awful or crazy or senile or any other words that someone might think if I wrote about this time in our lives.
Last year when I was on the campaign trail for our friend running for district judge, we went from door to door talking with people. One day a good friend of mine knocked on a door and spent quite a bit of time talking with an elderly lady. My friend asked if he could put a campaign sign in her yard. Yes, she said that would be great. He went and got the sign out of his vehicle and began putting the little wire sign in the yard. The lady came back out of her house screaming and ranting for him to get out of her yard. He did so without saying a word. Although my friend understood what was going on, because his own mother suffers from dementia/Alzheimer's, it was a weird situation when it was going down. I am not sure another person would have understood what was happening. And we all think, "Wow, that lady was crazy!"
If you think that would have been a weird situation, try being in similar situations every time you are with your mom. It no longer feels like it is your mom. It feels like you are with a stranger. Sometimes I want to just talk to Mom like she is my mom and can reason and have a normal conversation. But we are getting to the point where those times are few and far between. It is tough on me and my brother.
So, I wonder if writing down our experiences would help someone else. If someone out there would not feel like the lone ranger, then maybe writing this would be good. I don't know for sure. I'm not sure I can post my feelings and experiences. But I may write them down just to make myself feel better.