I’m Mourning and She’s Still Alive

My grandmother passed away with Dementia from two strokes in 2005. I’m reposting for the caregivers dealing with a loved one with Alzheimer’s or Dementia. For those who have not been a caregiver, these post may help you down the road. For the caregivers who give every ounce of energy, just one piece of advice if I may. Take time to clear your head, 10 or 30 minutes whatever you can for yourself each week. I did not have any one to offer suggestions and had brain drain after both of their deaths. My body was physically broken down. Due to the nature of the illness, it’s hard to take an eye off them, 24/7. I was fortunate we had hospice care for both of my grandparents. My grandfather was healthy enough to help with my grandmother. I don’t know how to turn my brain off.

I’m Morning and She’s Still Alive

As the caregiver for my grandparents, my hands are full yet my mind runs at a high level by switching to what I call “caregiver mode”. I can manage tons of information about what drugs they take, schedule appointments, discuss test results or anything else needed to take care of two people who are dying and “switch back” when at home.

Before the fall and broken hip, my grandmother knew me. Our conversations limited yet sharing memories with her made my day. She really enjoyed a photo book I put together with many photos of her beloved dog, Blackie. Thinking about Blackie always made her smile, even though he died twenty years ago she remembers him like it was today.

On the way to their house, last week tears started rolling down my face, I could not stop crying. It took a few minutes to figure out what was causing so much pain. My mind had switched from caregiver to granddaughter and realized my grandmother no longer knew me. We would not share our memories again. I knew the day would come and say prayers for the memories we shared. The realization was much harder to accept. I am in mourning and miss my grandmother so much.

Xx  M

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