I am rather disappointed in myself for not mentioning or even writing about Alzheimer’s on my blog since I feel so strongly about awareness and finding a cure for this dreadful disease. Why do I care about this or even want others to be aware of this disease? Because society has the tendency of waiting until something affects their lives before they become advocates or begin to look or fight for a cure. Why wait until it happens to you?
I have volunteered my time at a nursing home for close to 3 years (and yes I have a full-time job) and when I visit the Alzheimer’s floor it takes a lot for me not to cry, feel sad or show the pain I feel watching loved ones struggle with the agony and pain of visiting their loved ones who don’t even know they are there. Imagine visiting a mother, father, sister, brother, son or daughter and they don’t even recognize you. I, as a volunteer, feel their pain and frustration, I cannot imagine what they feel. I only know they feel obligated to show up but I don’t know what they must feel when they leave their loved ones in a strange place as they walk away with tears and pain in their hearts because they are not remembered.
My grandmother has Alzheimer’s and I cannot say I know what it feels like to have a family member suffer with this dreadful disease because I didn’t grow up with her. I only know what my mother tells me and what she is dealing with as far as feeding her, washing her, changing her diaper and being insulted by her because my grandmother does not recognize or remember her own daughter…that must be tough and painful. If and when my mom goes through that I know I will feel so much pain.
So yes, I am disappointed at not including this message on my blog because it is happening to so many people and so many are suffering in silence and not knowing what to do. My advice to all is to go to the Alzheimer’s website at http://www.alz.org and learn more about this dreadful disease and get the support you need to deal with what has affected your loved ones. It is not something to be ashamed of or deal with alone, visit the site and learn all you can to help you cope with this disease.
The more we learn now, the better our tomorrow will be.