Dementia – Love Me ‘Til My Life Is Done

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Sometimes those with Alzheimer’s/Dementia will wake in the middle of the night, upset and in a rage, wanting to go home.  One gentelman’s wife with dementia did this now and then.  He was so patient, he would dress her, go for a short drive, and return home.  He would take her back to her bedroom, and she was content to be home.

Dealing with dementia patients is not like dealing with an ill person.  For an ill  person you do something “to” and “for” them.  For a dementia person you do something “with” them. (socializing)

Caregivers feel helpless and emotionally drained.  But do not give up on your loved one.  Read this poem written by an unknown author, and have compassion for those with Alzheimer’s/Dementia.

  • Don’t ask me to remember,
  • Don’t try to make me understand,
  • Let me rest and know your’re with me,
  • Kiss my cheek and hold my hand.
  • I’m confused beyond your concept.
  • I am sad and sick and lost,
  • All I know is that I need you,
  • To be with me at all cost.
  • Do not lose your patience with me,
  • Do not scold or curse or cry,
  • I can’t help the way I’m acting,
  • Can’t be different though I try.
  • Just remember that I need you,
  • That the best of me is gone,
  • Please don’t fail to stand beside me.
  • Love me ’til my life is done.

Scientists studying dementia ask us to focus on what our loved ones can do.  Do not focus on the skills they have lost.  Normally long-term-memory and reading skills are less effected.  Even when a dementia patient can’t speak, they can still read if the print size is large enough. Spoken words. ” go in one ear and out the other.”  Those with dementia cannot store the spoken word in their memory.  Give them notes to read and they will not ask again and again where they or going or where something they want is stored.  Scientists know notes work, because they witness that dementia patients reading notes, will smile, and make pleasant sounds.  Those with dementia will stroke photos of loved ones with captions, because they read and then know the person in the photo.

I used baby monitors throughout my home dealing with my brother.  I learned this from a nurse who was caring for her mother with dementia. If I noticed or heard him, on my monitor screen, in a  certain room having problems, I went to help him find or complete a task he was trying to accomplish.  I used drive way alarms pointed at doors to know when he left or entered the house.  I had the receiving units for these alarms in my locked bedroom, but could hear them throughout my home.  These were aides to help me deal with an extreme dementia wanderer.

I know how hard being a caregiver is and that those with dementia do not know how to function correctly. So, just remember that they need you and love them until their life is done.

 

 

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15 thoughts on “Dementia – Love Me ‘Til My Life Is Done

  1. You’re such an amazing person for what you did for your brother. He was very well cared so blessed to have an amazing sister! I would have never known about writing letters and notes. This is a wonderful post and you never know who it may reach that needs it so much right now!!

  2. I have met some amazing caregivers who have given me so many tips. I am hoping the things they have discovered and the things I have discovered about care for a dementia patient, can help others.

  3. Dizzy Lizzie, your blog posts about dementia are so poignant and honest. I’m sorry for the burdens you have borne, and for your loss. I’m glad you are sharing your stories, though, and hope they will bless many people.

    Mandy, Your comments on Lizzie’s posts are so sweet, thoughtful, and supportive. I often “like” your comments because they are exactly the ideas I wanted to add. It’s so encouraging to see kind thoughts expressed on WordPress blogs. A year ago, I didn’t even know what a blog was. but throughout 2015, I’ve connected with many kind souls on these sites. 🙂

  4. Thank you so very much😊. DizzyLizzie is a very special and inspiring person. The world needs more people with huge hearts and a voice they’re not afraid to use😊

  5. Another lovely post!!! As usual you wrote with words from your heart. Amazing work to help others on leading with same kind of problems. I do know how difficult it is, as taking care of my mother on her 93 years old. Thanks friend and please keep writing for us!!!

  6. That was my mothers greatest fear! she hated the thought of leaving the world not knowing her own family (her side is sooo close, I still know great GREAT aunts that are still alive!). Sadly she left us due to cancer, but at least she knew us all till the end (we had her at home with Hospice and while changing her bed sheets, she died in my arms. I will NEVER forget!) Thank you for sharing this one Lizzie!

  7. How sad to have your Mother die in your arms. I am glad that she knew all of you to the end. My Mother did not know me at the end with her dementia, nor did my brother. You cannot tell them goodby when they have dementia. Thanks for telling me about your Mother. We always miss our Moms forever. Memories and pictures bring tears and smiles.

  8. The poem is so poignant.
    I have friends with family members with Alzheimer’s, so hear a little about how hard it is. Sharing your experiences surely help others who are going through this really difficult time.

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