You look at this pretty scene from nature and you think the world must be right! Well, for me at this moment the world is once again totally engulfed in dementia.
They rushed my brother, by ambulance, to the hospital early yesterday morning. The nurse from the nursing home said she had found him having a severe seizure. When I got to the emergency room my brother was having trouble breathing. From the cough and the congestion I heard, I knew he had pneumonia. My brother woke up and began to call for Mama. I held his hand, I talked to him, I tried to comfort him, he thought I was Mama. He was back in his childhood. I told him he was sick, I told him to close his eyes and rest. He had a death grip on my hand. He said, “Mama, I am sick.” I said, “I know baby, close your eyes and go to sleep, rest.” I stroked his forehead and his cheek and I thought of the long road of physical suffering for him as dementia destroys his brain and causes his body to stop functioning. I told every nurse, doctor, or person who tried to talk to him and ask him questions that he had dementia and could not correspond with them.
My brother had a mini-stroke, has pneumonia, and his second bladder infection in 3 months.
I have heard on the news that they think after the baby boomers get through old age, that dementia will decline. I do not believe that and I know many in the medical field who do not believe that. With preservatives, dyes, pesticides, pollution and many other factors, we as human beings are becoming more and more susceptible to diseases.
I am reading a book written by Richard Taylor called “Alzheimer’s From The Inside Out.” Richard worked hard after his diagnosis of Alzheimer’s to maintain enough brain power to let others know how it felt to have this disease. Richard was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at the age of 58. He died July 25, 2015 of Cancer, a blessing in a way I suppose. He did not have to suffer on that extra long trail of Alzheimer’s because cancer took him.
As a caregiver I researched and read everything I could on Alzheimer/Dementia because 4 of my immediately family died and are suffering with this disease. I want to know how to help those who are touched by this disease.
I returned from the hospital yesterday and am going back this morning. I said my goodbyes to my brother long ago, but it still touches my heart to see his physical suffering. I shed a lot of tears yesterday and my compassion was overwhelming me. I prayed and I ask God to help everyone in this world who is suffering mentally, physically, and spiritually.
At the end of Richard Taylor’s book he wrote one last paragraph which I will share with you. “Caregivers who are filled with fear and depression, use this pent-up anxious energy to educate yourselves, your families, your friends, and those around you about how our society treats those with the diseases of dementia. If any organization that deals with dementia will not be worked up to action in the name of your loved ones, perhaps self-interest will motivate them. The bell tolls for us all: it is just a matter of time when and where we hear it. I’ve heard it. I have Alzheimer’s disease. Act Up! Ring Out! SPEAK UP and OUT!”
Everyone needs that champion, that loved one, that helper, that caregiver to fight for them and help them endure their suffering. The only way to do that is to educate yourself about the disease your loved one is dealing with.