Hello, My Boomer Friends!
My name is Joanie, and I am an official Baby Boomer. In fact, my passion is my new and upbeat Baby Boomer website, FIFTY IS NIFTY.net!
I would like to greet my Diva friends from The Baby Boomer Diva Hall of Fame http://www.enjoyyourmenopause.com/web_of_fame.htm, along with my dear My Space friends, http://www.myspace.com/joanwhitehead
plus, of course, my Baby Boomers buds at http://www.fiftyisnifty.net. Please see my Recommended Links below to visit my friends and associates on the worldwide web.
Having said all that, let's get on to what my blog here is all about, which is Baby Boomer's and Alzheimer's Disease. I am quite sure many of you out there have had more experience than you would like dealing with family members and friends who have been stricken with this devasting disease. I would appreciate hearing from all of you who can extend advice, information and experiences...
You see, my mom has Alzheimer's, which has started to become more advanced recently. She is 83 years old, and her husband (my stepdad), Wayne, is 90. They live in Minnesota, which is where I am from, although I have been living in Las Vegas with my husband of five years. My mom and I were always very close, but I have not been able to see her much during the past 5 years, which has been when the downward spiral has been progressing. My step-dad has been able to provide wonderful care for my mom until recently...and has totally taken care of her and the entire household of their beautiful home here in Minnesota. Wayne did it all and is still handling more than you could believe a 90-year old guy could ever do. However, he is starting to lose it, which is more than understanding, plus my mom's situation is becoming more complicated.
Living in Las Vegas, and being so far away from home, made it difficult for me to see what was really going on with my mom and Wayne, and although I have been extremely concerned for a long time now, I had no grip on the severity of the situation until I arrived here for a Christmas visit. Long story short, my return airline reservations from the Twin Cities to Las Vegas were set for January 5th, and there is no way I could leave my mom and Wayne. My husband and I have made the decision that I stay here in Minnesota to help Wayne care for my mom. She needs me, and loves me being here, and Wayne most definitely needs my help. I am certain that I am doing what I was meant to do, and my husband is behind me all the way.
Anyway, I can't believe what this darned disease can do!!! My poor mom is suffering, and is so terribly frustrated by her memory loss and imaginings. She wakes up in the morning not knowing where or who she is. In fact, she sometimes does not remember my dad, who she was married to for over 35 years, and the love of her life, who died an untimely death at 64 from Diabetes. That, of course, is understandable. But she often does not even recognize Wayne, her husband who she has been married to for 18 years, and who has been here for her every single day. Gosh, it is so tough to see what she is going through.
But I gotta tell you, it is so very gratifying to see the difference it is making since I have been home. And all that matters to me, is making each and every day as happy and comfortable as humanly possible for my mom and Wayne for the rest of their days. They deserve that.
I would love to receive any advice and support any of you out there would like to offer. Thanks in advance, and I look forward to hearing from you!!