Dementia: Pleasure And Pain

It would be wrong to say that all is sweetness and light in our household.  My experiences yesterday paint a stark picture of how life can be on most days: the pleasure and pain with dementia the elephant in the room.  

I decided to stay around yesterday morning and not hoot-foot it to the Leisure Centre when the carer was in situ.  Chloe assumed the role of ‘cleaning lady’ and Maureen and I pottered in the garden as she made our house a little more presentable.

I felt tired in the afternoon and decided to seek a nap on the bed.  Maureen continued her quest for a walk by opening and closing the front door as I tried to get some shut-eye: so my siesta came to an abrupt end as I feared Maureen would wander off.  Maureen eventually got her way and within half an hour we had a lovely experience as we began our walk in search of blue bells in nearby Weelsby Woods.

We came across a friendly group of people as we made it to the top of a steep incline just as we were about to enter the woods.  Following a brief greeting we chatted to them for half an hour or so.  After a while we found out they were a group of Missionaries from the Church of Jesusu Christ Latter-Day Saints.

Maureen was particularly taken by Lesly a young woman from Bolivia (pictured right) who she chatted to for quite some time. Lesly was lovely with Maureen and very keen to keep in touch.  I hope it is not the last we hear from this lovely group of young people but Maureen was concerned that we must have biscuits in stock if they took up out invitation to visit our home.

When Maureen discovered that some of the group were French speaking she sang  them one her favourites from South Pacific:

We didn’t find many blue belles on our walk but what we did find more than compensated for my disappointment at not being able to catch up on some sleep.  The pleasure of seeing Maureen in her element in the woods soon turned to pain at ten ‘o’ clock as we went to bed.  Once again Maureen made it clear that she wanted the bed to herself as she didn’t want to be too hot. She continued on a similar them at 4 ‘o’clock this morning as she didn’t want a stranger in her bed as she ‘didn’t know who I was’.  I’m not finding any of this easy and need to consider whether the best way forward is acceptance or some form of intervention.  Any reader of this Blog would realise that my predisposition towards neuroplasticity is likely to mean that I’m not just going to lie down and accept that I belong in the spare room but on the other hand I need to seek to minimise distress.  As I have drafted this post I have just received comments from Gill that give me real food for thought.

 

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About Remember Me

I am a retired adult educator. My wife had a stroke in February 2014 and now has mixed dementia. Her recovery from stroke has been exceptional apart from 50% loss of peripheral vision and vascular damage. 'Dharma For Dementia' is my approach to being Maureem's Care Partner: it aims to end the suffering of 'Prescribed Disengagement' (Swaffer) .
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4 Responses to Dementia: Pleasure And Pain

  1. Kristen says:

    Hello, I log on to your new stuff regularly. Your story-telling style is witty, keep it up!

    Like

  2. Will says:

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