Just as winter robs this Oak tree of its leaves, Dementia robs a person of their mind. Your mind slowly dies and disappears. It takes from you, your personality, your ability to understand, the memories stored in your brain. It causes you confusion, takes your skills on how to perform daily tasks of life. It takes you from those you love. I have shed many tears for the loss of the brother I once knew. How many times have I wanted my brother to return to me. I cannot count all the things I miss about my brother, they are too numerous. The hardest part of dementia, for a caregiver, is to watch their loved ones deal with the loss of being a normal human being. Their dignity gets lost in the shuffle as their mind slowly fades away.
Sorrow really rears its head when you are a caregiver, but the emotion that truly hits home is guilt. It is not the caregiver’s fault their loved one has dementia. You never feel as if you are handling the situation correctly. You do not want to make the decisions for another human being. You feel helpless when those in authority force you into making a choice, between 2 alternatives, for your loved one’s care. At times grief kicks in and the tears flow. You feel selfish, because you tell yourself you do not want to be a caregiver any longer, yet you know that is what you have to do.
Anger plagues the caregiver, because you try to protect your loved one from all the drugs that doctors prescribe. You see your loved one with dementia turned into a robot that the nursing home can control. It makes you feel as if the drugs are destroying what brain your loved one has left. I fight for my brother constantly about the over use of drugs. I have to admit it seldom does much good, but I have to try. Caregiver means you are required to protect a person who is incapable of protecting themself.
It’s hard for me to enjoy my life, because I realize my brother has an inferior life to mine. Somehow this seems cruel and unfair. You want to turn the clock back 20 years and give back to your brother, the life he lost.
Perhaps someday no one else in this world will have to suffer with this horrible disease called Dementia. That cure will be discovered. I know it is too late for my brother, but I pray to God that the cure will be found soon.