Alzheimer’s changes the brain…and affects areas in that lovable cerebral cortex responsible for language, reasoning and social behavior.
Repetition is part of what John is going through. Serious repetition. He will ask me the same question over and over and over and over and over and over (and probably more).
At first, I thought I’d go mad. Now, I just answer that question over and over and over and over and over until he’s satisfied. Calmly. Quietly. And when he’s out of earshot I will take a deep breath and say out loud “Oh dear God!” and be done with it. This is my learning curve—and it’s a steep one.
Which brings me to appreciation.
Although this adult life challenges me with responsibilities for two, I try to get out and about frequently with John and do things—fun things, everyday things, unique things—things that make us smile and continue to stimulate both of us in different ways.
Last year, with no plans for my birthday, I decided to take a ride to one of the nearby carousel parks. Growing up a “Jersey girl” I loved riding the carousels (truthfully I called them merry-go-rounds) on the boardwalks down the shore even if my arms were too short to catch the rings as I circled by.
It was a beautiful carousel. Well maintained and under cover.
We rode five times—on horses, on camels, on rabbits. No stationary animals for us! We laughed as we bobbed up and down. It was so basic, so childish and we had a blast.
I’m appreciative that I can still enjoy these seemingly simple to some yet complex to him things.
Life is, in fact, like a carousel. Ups and downs. An opportunity to enjoy a ride on a “horse of a different color”. And if your arms are too short—who cares? You don’t need that damn brass ring anyway.