Speaking of our story, my husband and I now freely talk about his Alzheimer's and Vascular Dementia. In fact, we have been to two support groups (July 28 and August 8) where both the person with Alzheimer's and their spouse/caregiver are part of the discussion. Both of these have been at the Alzheimer's Association in Eloise, near Winter Haven, Florida. At the second one some of those with Alzheimer's painted; you see, folks, the economical Alzheimer's Association rents rooms with an art association. Sally and Jake were not at these sessions. August 8th they were babysitting a grandchild, and July 28th they were on a trip to the mountains.
Their trip, you think, would have satisfied Jake's yen for the South Carolina mountains and the cabin he built there and later sold. Sally and Jake rented a nearby cabin and went to the church they were used to going to when they stayed up there, but the road to the cabin that Jake build had a chain link on it and Jake was not able to see that cabin and how the new owners were doing. Somewhere in the recesses of Jake's stage-two mind he thinks that he and my husband can get up there and live without us wives. My husband knows better. At one point on their vacation he wanted to walk "home", but Sally was able to get him back to their rented cabin. They came home last Thursday. When we went to dinner the next night, Jake had trouble recalling his recent trip, the horseback riding, etc.
This afternoon Sally and I are going to our monthly Alzheimer's Association meeting in Plant City. Jake will hang out at the house with DH. This morning DH and I discussed orienting Jake in pool playing. Jake actually won a game with me once--not hard to do. I cleaned off the pool table from all my projects (currently I am teaching a counseling class) so they can play pool. Hope they do play pool while Sally and I are gone. DH, after all, gets very bored with Jake's obsessions about getting his driver's license back, and stealing away to the mountains. This is not to say that DH has no obsessions now, but I have learned to manage his obsessions.
My husband is happy and not bothered by his disability. When we go out to eat we blow the straw paper covering at each other before putting it in our cold drink. We play blue grass music and when the four of us are out, both Jake and DH sitting in the back seat of the car move to the music. DH and I sing the song "Side By Side" in the car (I have it on my iPod).
Ironic. In fact, I don't know what's coming tomorrow, but live one day at a time, ever grateful that my husband and I have such good times and communication.Oh, we ain't got a barrel of moneyMaybe we're ragged and funnyBut we'll travel alongSinging our songSide by SideDon't know what's coming tomorrow. . .