Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Gifts for Caregivers and Those With Alzheimer's

At one time I was a widow and now I am a caregiver. I would rather be a caregiver than a widow, let me tell you. As someone said in our Alzheimer's Association support group yesterday, I am in my marriage for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health until death us do part. When I was a widow, however, someone did say to me, Carol, we want to help, but you will have to tell us how. The pastor sent people to the house to fix things then and I did ask for specific help. When you are a caregiver of a husband who has Alzheimer's, you are grieving the loss of skills and abilities that your husband once had. You are both married and a widow in a sense.

The gifts that I appreciate now are:
  • Help with the computer. Thanks, Dave, for always fixing our computers--yes even my husband's so he can see his Facebook photos and I can use the biblical resources on his computer. Thanks for helping me get my Nook hooked up on my computer.
  • The Lutheran youth group (not even my church) who will come here to weed.
  • My neighbors who notice and mow the yard.
  • Bob who put up our Christmas tree.
  • People who pray. Revelation 5 says that their prayers before God are like incense in a gold bowl.
  • People who e-mail or call and ask what can I do?
  • People who post on this blog.
A child's book, Giving, by  Shirley Perich, out of print I think, has a boy who receives $10 from his aunt. He says it will be fun to go shopping when it's all about me. Then his mother in the mall asks him, "How about shopping for Grandma or your best friend instead?" He buys candy for his grandparents--their favorite. He goes home and helps his dad shovel the snow and his mom cook and clean. From Giving:

My day started out boring
But ended up being fun.
Now I'm all tired out
From the things that I've done.
I know what I do
Shows my family I care
It's a pretty good feeling
To give and to share.

I am a guest blogger on another blog--that of Joe whose book I have reviewed here. I just posted (Dec. 14) quotes from Richard Taylor's book,  Alzheimer's from the Inside Out on his blog click here . One quote I will also share here:
I want to encourage, advocate, promote, and persuade you to think about being a "Best Friend" to the loved one in your life who has Alzheimer's disease. p. 241
You can visit
or call and talk with
your friend
who has Alzheimer's.
Tell them your name
so they don't have to ask. 
Post on Joe's blog, also.  


  1. Thank you for this post. I too am blessed by so many who come to help us. It's often the little things that become overwhelming and make me miss my husband's abilities, like getting the Christmas decorations down from the attic, etc. BUT then, a friend says "What can I do?" and in the blink of an eye, the task is done. I can truly say that being part of the Body of Christ, is a HUGE comfort and demonstrates God's special love for us. I'm interested in finding out more about the book also. Merry Christmas!

  2. So true, what a blessing it is when people offer help
    I love this post

  3. Merry Christmas dear friend! I always love your posts!

  4. Laurie, one year later, you have a great blog post on this subject of what to give people with Alzheimer's and I am taking up your suggestion on a photo memory book for my husband. Thanks. Also, you have such a great network of support. We are in such a small church and will need that support as time goes on. Hugs and prayers, Carol who was just reviewing comments through the four years of blogging.

  5. aging parentCaregiver Space. The work we do at The Caregiver Space stems from our commitment to ensuring caregivers feel seen, heard and most of all supported.