Loading discussion content. Please wait...
I Have Alzheimer’s or Another Dementia
How Alzheimer's Has Changed My Life
From Alzheimer's Daily News:
(Source: Globe and Mail) - Robin Leckie reflects upon the impact that Alzheimer's has had upon his life. But more importantly, how his life has changed, for the worse and for the better. He recalls one day: I had just returned from a doctor's appointment and now what I had expected for some time, was diagnosed - I had Alzheimer's. The good part was that now I could do something to slow the process.
Instead of phoning my four children with the news of my diagnosis, I decided to write to each of them, to let it sink in when they were alone. We have also told our friends. Most people who meet me are surprised to learn of my dementia. For some, Alzheimer's progresses very rapidly. For others, like myself, the progress has been slow moving - possibly because of early detection and thus, early treatment.
I celebrated my 80th birthday last year and still have plans for the future. Alzheimer's is not a death sentence. We all live finite lives - I am now on a different kind of journey.
I no longer socialize much, preferring quiet times on my own, and since I now prefer familiar sights. I begin my day with the Ken-Ken and Sudoku from my daily paper. I read every page of The Economist. I walk for an hour most days alongside the lake and through our country-like parks. I am able to contribute in our book club although I must write down a list of the characters as I read. I can still occasionally beat my wife at Scrabble.
Even the healthiest amongst us, every day, dies a little with some loss or pain, but every day we can grow a little too. I read a recent obituary of someone who died at 95 and he wanted his tombstone to read "Still curious."
I see my life as a movie, in slow motion where the camera lingers on what is important and often a bright light illuminates a scene. In the amazing mystery of how our brains work, I may not remember what I had for lunch yesterday, but all my early adventures are still within me. I have written many little stories from my life, for my grandchildren.
Alzheimer's is a process, a constant companion, a conjoined twin. While medication has helped, I know of no diet or drugs or surgery that will suddenly cure me. I tire easily but I accept this - I am growing physically old too. I become easily confused, am often dizzy, and increasingly have nightmares, but feel lucky to be in no pain.
I sometimes think this is my sunset time. The bright light of day is passing and darkness lies ahead. I do not know what the dawn will bring. But right now, in this moment, I am thankful my life is full.
Go to full story: http://www.theglobeandmail.com
Visit us often, bela. We welcome care partners.
I discovered something very interesting that could apply to me. One of the commenters to this article, rovingdoc, wrote that the author's sleep disorder could be REM sleep disorder, which is associated with Lewy Body dementia.
This brings to mind that I have a sleep disorder and I had parkinsonian symptoms in the past. Lewy Bodies dementia responds to the anti-cholinesterase medications. I'll have to look into this further and discuss with the neurologist.
Thanks for this article, Myriam.