Saturday, December 31, 2016

Adios 2016, you were a rotten year.

 December 30.2016

Never have I been so glad to turn my back on a current year. On Facebook I described the year as a "shitstorm" and indeed it was. It would be negative to he max to recount all the bad things that have happened so I will close out 2016 with the good news that the biopsy was negative, in other words no cancer,  hallelujah.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Dementia, the disease that steals your mind

March 15. 2016

You learn something new every day, for instance I learned that there are around 88 different types of dementia (Alzheimers), my husband was diagnosed about two years ago with vascular dementia, the arteries in his head are narrowing or do we call that calcifying? It is no surprise that something like hit him at the age of about 93, he will be 95 this summer.
It came on slowly and I didn't "get it", I would tell him something and he'd say "I don't understand what you mean." I would get impatient and say "everyone else gets what I am saying." English is my second language, I began learning it at the age of eleven when I went to high school in Germany, but I kept wondering if I express myself correctly. Time went on and I suggested new hearing aids, he came home telling me that they told him he had trouble with comprehension. I mentioned that perhaps we should see a Neurologist and he agreed. He got a simple test and failed and we were told that he has dementia. He was prescribed medication with instructions to come back in three months. He did better on the memory test but I asked the doctor how can we be sure it is not something else like a tumor on the brain? I told him I wanted an MRI, well at his ripe old age and the new Obama are and Medicare cutting costs wherever so that our politicians can get bigger raises, the doctor told me he would  have to manipulate things, I told him to go ahead and manipulate I wanted that MRI. It came back narrowing of the arteries in the brain.

Almost two years have past and things have gotten worse, his short term memory is literally gone,he still takes care of his physical needs, showers, dresses is continent and takes the dog to the dog park daily. He plays poker once a week with old friends and last winter he was on his way at 6:45 pm, the place is about a mile and a half from home. He called me and told me he didn't know where he was and I told him to find an intersection and call me. I went out thinking I could find him and realized no wonder he got lost, we have no street lights and landmarks disappear in the night. He called me to tell me he was home. After that his friends pick him up and bring him homes. During the day he would drive himself to the doctor and after a while that faded from his mind as well, so now I drive him wherever he needs to go.

Yesterday I took him to the doctor and afterwards I was going to take him to see his 92 year old friend in the nursing home where she was for rehab, time ran out and I promised to take him today.

I have pneumonia and basically have been sick since just before the new year and needed soberest. I heard the bell that signals that someone has left home and I figured he'd take the dog to the backyard. I got up and no husband, he had decided to go visit his friend. He came home hours later and said "I didn't find it," and I mentioned I'd have to take the car keys away soon. It will be one of the saddest day of my life. Today I drove him to see her but she had been discharged.

A friend and I go to support group three times a month, it's good to hear that I am not alone, I feel my case is worse because all of our 35 years my husband has handled all financials, insurance, house etc. and all of a sudden it is on my shoulders and I know nothing and he remembers nothing. What is hardest is the fact that all of a sudden you are alone, friends don't call and say "let's go out to lunch," and you feel isolated. Right now I'm sick and I feel like I've been locked in the house forever and I worry that without social stimulation I will fall into dementia before I know it, but I am sure that I am not the only one with that fear.

This is a pot I made some years ago called "Hands across the world." It is in the home of a friend. I sold my pottery something that I regret but felt I had to do, I am not sure it didn't help me stay sane.

Friday, January 1, 2016

The New Year Has Begun

January 1. 2016

In younger years I would write deepest thoughts into my journal, my  hopes, wishes and dreams. In odd years I thought it was going to be a bad year and in years like 2016, I just knew it would be a terrific year. I guess one is allowed to dream especially when young when life has not tainted our view.

While I was still in Germany and my father was alive, we'd "giess Blei" we'd hold a spoon like device over a flame to liquify the led and empty it into cold water. We'd try to see what it was and a little booklet would tell the fortune, nobody believed anything but it was fun.

In our twenties we'd go out, drink and strangers would kiss you at midnight I hated that worse than anything and in later year avoided it like the plague, nothing worse than some drunk you didn't know trying to kiss you, yuck. We all drank in our twenties and even thirties, I am sure of it, in my forties I decided that I wanted to be fully aware of what foolish shit I did and never wanted to have to say "well you know I was drunk". If I did something stupid I would apologize or not depending how I felt.

Last night's wait until the New Year was the most boring yet, we have company from South America and the 10 year old got an X-box for Christmas and he's been glued to the TV ever since. When I mentioned I wanted to watch CNN with Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin the mood went sour and father and son retreated to the guest room supposedly to go to bed. I am an avid reader so I considered it my good fortune, went to bed and read my Kindle, to me it was an excellent start of a new year and promises for good days. I wish you all the best that the year can bring, may it heap blessings on all of you.