Tuesday, January 18, 2011
JANUARY 18, 2011 PROTECT YOUR MEMORY
" Memory is a way of holding on to the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose.”
There is a difference between your memory and your memories. If you lose your memory , you will lose your memories. I do not want to lose my memory. I hold onto my memories with much love, happiness and affection. If I didn't have my memories I would never be able to recall the happy moments in my life. When a special person in your life is no longer here, you only have those memories. The memories can be seen in pictures, movies, cards, letters and tape recordings. What would happen if a loved one is still alive, but he/she has no memory ? This is a rather difficult situation. It is more difficult for the family and friends of the patient, rather the patient him/herself.
Yesterday I saw a woman whom I have known for ten years. She did not appear her usual self. For one she could not recall my name, nor her family members with her. She does dress herself, but lives in a senior home with all her meals prepared. Her dress is always impeccable and color coordinated. She asked the same question about five to ten times. I assured her about her health, her pacemaker and her arthritis. She still asked the same questions. She has been on conventional as well as integrative therapies for her memory loss. Yet, the aging process since her last visit has accelerated. After the visit ended, I sat at my desk pondering my own demise and if it happens to be Alzheimer's or Dementia. I would not want to put my loved ones through the agony of seeing me helpless, not able to read, interact socially, and not being able to needle point or knit. I would want them to remember me the way I used to be.
Although I would not want them to abandon me if I still had judgement, I can certainly understand if my family did. The family I am speaking of is my children. I can certainly understand if family members stop visiting their own mother or father if he/she has Alzheimer's. What kind of life is this ! Who suffers--the patient with Alzheimer's or the surviving children? There is not a good answer because we as humans have a conscience. What would you think if your friend stopped visiting his dad because his dad has severe memory loss?
If my own dad had lived and began to have memory loss, I do not know honestly how I would have handled the situation.
We have memories...
From The Way we Were
Light the corners of my mind
Misty water-colored memories
Of the way we were
Of the smiles we left behind
Smiles we gave to one another
For the way we were
Can it be that it was all so simple then?
Or has time re-written every line?
If we had the chance to do it all again
Tell me, would we? Could we?
Mem'ries, may be beautiful and yet
What's too painful to remember
We simply choose to forget
So it's the laughter
We will remember
Whenever we remember...
The way we were...
the way we were...
Alzheimer's is the most common form of dementia, a general term for memory loss and other intellectual abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer's disease accounts for 50 to 70 percent of dementia cases. Alzheimer's is not a normal part of aging, although the greatest known risk factor is increasing age, and the majority of people with Alzheimer's are 65 and older. But Alzheimer's is not just a disease of old age. Up to 5 percent of people with the disease have early-onset Alzheimer's (also known as younger-onset), which often appears when someone is in their 40s or 50s.
Memory loss that disrupts daily life is not a typical part of aging. Here are 10 warning signs of Alzheimer's
1. Memory loss that disrupts daily life For example: forgetting a planned event
2. Challenges in solving problems for example; following a simply family food recipe
3. Difficulty in completing daily tasks for example : at work or at home managing a budget
4. Confusion with time and place for example : not knowing what month it is based on the outside temperature
5. Trouble understanding visual images for example; judging distance while driving the car or worse, passing a mirror thinking that someone else is in the room
6. Trouble following a conversation with a family member for example; struggling with a vocabulary word
7. Misplacing things and losing ability to retrace steps for example losing things as keys, blaming others for stealing or moving them ( I do this all the time with my reading glasses)
8. Poor judgement for example: poor in dealing with money or financial situations
9. Withdrawal from social activities for example: do not want to see best friends, remove themselves from their fun loving hobbies
10. Changes in mood or personality for example: becoming confused, depressed , anxious , fearful and suspicious
MEMORIES from Cats
Not a sound from the pavement
Has the moon lost her memory
She is smiling alone
In the lamplight
The withered leaves collect at my feet
And the wind begins to moan
All alone in the moonlight
I can dream of the old days
Life was beautiful then
I remember the time I knew what happiness was
Let the memory live again
Every street lamp seems to beat
A fatalistic warning
Someone mutters and the street lamp sputters
And soon it will be morning
I must wait for the sunrise
I must think of a new life
And I mustn't give in
When the dawn comes
Tonight will be a memory too
And a new day will begin
Burnt out ends of smoky days
The stale cold smell of morning
A street lamp dies, another night is over
Another day is dawning
It's so easy to leave me
All alone with the memory
Of my days in the sun
If you touch me,
You'll understand what happiness is
Look, a new day has begun...
Until tomorrow...more on Alzheimer's