Archive for September, 2013

Fast and Hard

Jim and his radar in Columbia, 1998

Jim and his radar in Columbia, 1998

Sometimes, when you least expect it, sadness and grief overcome you. I think this happens when someone you love dies. I am finding out the hard way that this also happens when someone you love has a disease that steals them from you bit by bit.

A few days ago I needed to go to the base for something. Jim is retired Air Force, so we still have base privileges.  I was by myself, in between meetings for work. It was a beautiful day, there were good tunes on my radio and I had no complaints.

It has been a few years since I have gone on the base and I wasn’t sure where I was going. I made it through the base gate just fine. Made it to the building I needed to with no problems. But as I was driving away, something hit me. An invisible phenomenon hit me hard and hit me fast. Out of nowhere. I couldn’t control the tears or stop the upheaval that had materialized inside of me. This unprovoked inner turmoil wasn’t even triggered by a song. I became completely enveloped in a sadness that comes from a subconscious I usually keep tucked away. The years of living on a base with Jim, seeing him in his uniform, watching him take so much pride in his job, his service to our country, his pure absorption of all things military and my complete lack of adherence to just about anything military were all swarming through my mind. Flashes of Jim, young, handsome, stoic, so sure of himself and so able were seriatim through my mind. It cut me into mush. I got short of breath. I was taken by surprise with this sudden burst of emotion. Emotion I was unable to contain.

Those unvolunteered flashbacks caused me to think of Jim. My Jim. The Jim I met, fell in love with, started a family with and thought I would grow old with. The Jim that people respected and looked up to. The Jim that took charge at work.  The Jim who coordinated care for millions of dollars worth of equipment.  And now it is his care that needs some coordinating. And that care will be augmented with each year we stumble through. I could see so clearly his smile and youth. His clear eyes and complete confidence as he walked through my memories.

While these flashbacks ran through my brain, it hit me how young and innocent and full of the future we were. Like most married couples, we expected to have a family, work hard, struggle for a few years with finances and teenage angst, then have our golden years to come back full circle and enjoy each other and the memories we could cherish. All we had to do was work hard at our marriage, our family and our life together.

It was another reminder that I will have those memories. Jim will not. I will remember him and our love and our early years together and our dreams of travel and grandkids and the comforting feeling of home whenever I was in his presence.

Intermingled with the images of Jim were pains of regret. Regret in my lack of interest in his military life. My inability to appreciate his extreme structure and just how successful and good he was at being a soldier. Why couldn’t I take it all in and see the bigger picture? I questioned all the rules and regulations too much. I resented the fact he was always traveling and we couldn’t choose where to live. I should have relaxed and let our life unfold and enjoy it while I could.

I recognize the fact that none of us are guaranteed a day. None of us know when our time is up. But one of the things that separates humans from any other animal on earth is our ability to remember our past, plan for our future and dream of things to come.

Ouch. I am a dreamer. I am a realist and I am a dreamer. I dream of many things. One of the things I dream is Jim and I, old, cherishing our family and retelling our stories of the kids and friends through the years. What I can’t remember, he will be able to recall with certainty. Why are those things being stripped from Jim when he is such a remarkable and great man?

Yes, it hurts. It is emotional draining. It is hard to imagine. And yet, it is here. With me 24/7, unrelenting and uncompromising.

At the Grand Canyon. 1998.

At the Grand Canyon. 1998.

By now my mascara was running and I was overwhelmed with grief. Knowing the man I was picturing in my mind and the visions from our past would always be in our past simply hurt. Hurt and bittersweet. The love and the times I can recall are wonderful times. But it hurts to know the dreams we shared and the fact they will not becoming true. That makes our love story and my memories bittersweet.

As I kept driving, I simply re-focused on my upcoming meeting and in a flash, my inner turmoil and tears evaporated. If I could only make all of my problems disappear as quickly and easily.

Our honeymoon. Puerta Vallarta Mexico. May 1997.

Our honeymoon. Puerta Vallarta Mexico. May 1997.

posted by Karen in Early Signs of Alzheimer's,Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Uncategorized,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (9)

Let the best team win.

 

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I have tears streaming down my face. Not because I am frustrated, upset with Jim or the kids.

Because I feel the support and love and caring of others.

Tonight I was actually just wasting time. Time I usually don’t have. I was scrolling through Facebook, catching up on absolutely nothing important. It was a guilty moment of pleasure that I seldom get these days.

And I saw a post that went to my core. A post that caught me off guard.

Flashback a few days. A couple of mom’s from Brad’s baseball team, which just came together in August, told me they wanted to do a team for the upcoming Walk to End Alzheimer’s. They asked when it was. They said they wanted the boys to be involved because we didn’t have games that weekend. They said they would look into it. I told them I would send them some info. (I haven’t).

Flash forward to tonight. There was a brand new team to our local walk. Brad’s team. 10 and under. Mom’s I know and Mom’s I don’t really know. People I have just met.

People who have lives. Busy lives just like mine with multiple kids doing multiple activities. Kids on teams that are selling stuff to raise money to participate in tournaments. To have a weekend off from games is a luxury. Why would they commit themselves to ANOTHER event? And one they have to FUNDRAISE for? Between schools and ball teams, I feel like I all do is ask people to buy stuff, and then I have my requests for donations to the Alzheimer’s Association. I have a team for the Walk to End Alzheimer’s. A team that I have not done one thing with. They are friends that support me no matter what and who are not getting any guidance from their leader. They are on their own. I had just been thinking earlier today that I need to send out an e-mail. I need to get on the ball and raise some money and get it together.

And, instead. I trolled through Facebook for a good 30 minutes. Mind numbing. At 10 o’clock at night.  Awake by myself. And then I saw the post that changed my whole day. I had had a good day. Now I have had a great day. And so have you. Because…

As my Dad keeps telling me, “there are good, kind, caring people out there. You are finding them.”

Yes. I am. When I find them, I am always stunned and amazed. And then the tears come. But it is a good cry. Not a painful cry. Not a “what the Hell am I going to do” cry. Not a feel sorry for myself cry. Not a feel sorry for the kids cry. These are tears of pure amazement and joy.

I wanted to donate to them. And I have a team that I am trying to raise money for. But I don’t mind if they beat my team. It all goes in the same pot, and I kind of think I like the idea of 10 year old baseball players raising the most money for our walk. I don’t mind losing to a bunch of boys. May the best team win….

Click here to donate.

posted by Karen in Early Signs of Alzheimer's,Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have No Comments

Insert Foot Find Love

Well. I’ve finally done it. Put my foot in my mouth and done an interview that is getting NATIONAL attention for our cause, but at the same time coming across (understandably) as a cold, uncaring, unloving and selfish woman.

I went to DC and did a fantastic job speaking for all of us at the Living with Alzheimer’s Roundtable at the National Press Club. It was emotional and hard. It was draining. Being immersed in all things Alzheimer’s really wipes you out emotionally and mentally.

Then, I went back to the Alzheimer’s Association’s office for a phone interview with someone from CNN.com. Here was my chance to REALLY share our story. Really let the world know how difficult and frustrating and lonely and scary this path we all walk can be. Not just for Younger Onset, but for all of the families struggling each day as they watch a loved one slipping away.

So, I answered her questions and did so with a lot of candor and honesty. Honesty is the best policy, right?

As I was driving the 3+ hours home, I replayed my answers and the days’ conversations with the various people I had interacted with at the roundtable. My head was full of it all. Then it hit me. Shit. I think that sentence I said was not said right. I don’t think I put it the right way. I think if that gets printed, it is not going to sound good. I think it will overshadow the purpose of the interview in the first place.

By the time I arrived home and gave hugs and kisses to the kids and Jim, the article was up. CNN.com. National. And, yes, there was my quote. Without the emotion. Without the love. Without explanation of the measures we are taking to stave off symptoms and prolong Jim’s life while he is able.  Without mention of the countless hours we have sat in doctor’s offices, the hours of driving to appointments, the hours spent on my bedroom floor in pure agony and filled with the terror of losing Jim and the kids losing their father. Crying until there was no sound left to come from the depths of my soul.

No mention of the supplements and medications Jim has taken throughout the years. There was no link to my blog so readers learn more about our story. To see that I do love Jim. That I don’t want to lose him. That I want to keep him with us as long as I can. All readers will see is that I want him to hurry up and die and get all of this over with.

So, lesson learned (I hope). When giving interviews, make sure you don’t say anything that can be written independently and come across so uncaring and cold.

I am sorry. I feel like I have let so many of you down. I know I did a great job at the roundtable. I did what I was supposed to do. I gave them emotion and tears and some of the tears were theirs. That is what I was there for. This CNN gig was an added opportunity that I feel like I blew……

Fast forward a day. What an unbelievable response.  To quote the reporter from an e-mail she sent me: Your story has touched many readers today. I’ve never seen a story receive so many supportive comments.

It has been an emotional time for me. Worry. Stress. Relief. Emotional highs and lows. Crying in front of Jim and telling him I was sorry, only to have him hug me and tell me how much he loves me and what a good job I am doing. The e-mails and messages from so many friends and strangers that are supportive and loving and full of kindness and sadness at the same time. Thank you. Really. Thank. You.

All of this being said, I will not stop talking. I encourage EVERY single person that has Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia that are able to, please speak up. Be heard. If you are a caregiver, a care partner, a loved one, a friend; SPEAK UP!! Our voices need to be heard. We need to make Alzheimer’s something that doesn’t carry a stigma. We need to make Alzheimer’s something that doesn’t put families in financial ruin. We need to demand a cure and treatments that work! Call your Congressman/woman! Write a letter to the editor. Talk to your friends and co-workers and neighbors. There is nothing to be ashamed of by dealing with this terrible disease. But living with shame and trying to hide it and to keep this battle inside of you is not helping yourself, your loved one or others that are going through this too. Let us all have our pain and loss heard. Even if it means being misunderstood and misrepresented.  If I can do it, so can you.

posted by Karen in Early Signs of Alzheimer's,Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Uncategorized,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (15)

Living With Alzheimer’s Roundtable

DC Roundtable

Follow the discussion by Twitter

 

This Thursday, September 19th, I have a HUGE task.

I have been invited to participate in a Roundtable discussion about Living with Alzheimer’s. In Washington D.C. In front of live media and with them taping me. Did I mention this would be live? And taped?

On the roundtable panel are doctors, researchers, executives, ceo’s, founders, authors and another caregiver. And me. I am representing Younger Onset Alzheimer’s and caregivers. Me.

How did this happen?

Somedays I don’t think I can put another foot in front of another and don’t see how I can make it through. Now I am pulling myself together, leaving the kids with Jim (that is a worry) and headed to D.C. to be heard. To speak for all of you that write to tell me your stories. I will be speaking for the wife that is changing her husband’s Depends. I will be speaking for the husband that is fighting with doctors just to get his wife diagnosed. I will be speaking about the lack of funding for all of us and how we are losing our homes, our jobs, our savings and the dreams of a better future.

There will be videos. There will be Facebook posts. There will be the releasing of the World Alzheimer’s Report 2013. There will be another roundtable discussion in Europe and another in Asia. (I was not asked to those)

Can I tell you something? I am excited. I am nervous, but I am excited. I am excited about this opportunity and honored I was asked. I am also excited to be heading to D.C. by myself. Alone. I love big cities. And I love being able to hang by myself in a hotel room. Doing whatever I want. Watching whatever I want on TV. One night will be enough away from Frances and Brad. I will be more than ready to get their hugs when I return. Jim is proud. I can tell. He hasn’t said much about it, but I know he is. This is a little different than speaking to a group of caregivers or at a fundraiser. I want to convey to every one there the loneliness, the anguish, the heartbreak and the exhaustion that are behind every statistical number in that report.

I will try my best to make you all proud and to let our voices be heard as one. My friends, this is how a change is going to happen. Remember, it isn’t one lone voice that will change anything; but a chorus that reverberates around and around until it fills every nook and cranny and nothing else can be heard.

posted by Karen in Early Signs of Alzheimer's,Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (10)

Please save me some….

choices

Jim eats. A lot. He usually eats enough for 2 or 3 people at a sitting. There is seldom any leftovers in our home. Which is fine by me. I am not a big leftover kind of person anyway.

But sometimes the “leftovers” are my dinner.

A couple of days ago Brad had baseball practice. Frances had a violin lesson. So, Jim took her and I took him. Before I left for baseball practice, I cooked some chicken for dinner. Then I left a note for Jim and Frances on heating up the pasta and veggies.

There would be enough for Brad and I to eat when we got home. Needless to say, when we rolled into the kitchen at 8:30, hungry and tired, there was no pasta left. Thankfully I had fixed a lot of chicken, so we had that to eat, but nothing to go with it. The vegetables were gone too. As was the orange I had peeled for Brad before we left that he didn’t eat.  I was going to teach him a lesson and make him eat it when we got home.

As I heated up some chicken and peeled another orange, tears stung my eyes.  Why? Why should I care? There was still chicken to eat….

I cried because this is another example of Jim not being able to be Jim. Of him not being able to be the father I know he is. Because I was tired after working all day. I was tired from rushing to cook dinner, rushing to ball practice, making sure I had laundry started, thinking I needed to call Verizon again for the 3rd month in a row because they were still overcharging us (which is itself enough to make me want to scream) and I still had some work to do later that night. I was physically tired and mentally exhausted. It had been a calming, nice feeling to think on the way home that I didn’t have to worry about our dinner. It was waiting for us….

Jim not being able to understand that Brad and I still needed to eat and he should leave us something was a breaking point.  Jim not being able to help with any of the tasks I had yet to do that evening was seeping into my mind and bringing out a bitterness I work hard to keep tucked far away. Sometimes those ungrateful demons start escaping.

Having time away from the moment and the situation allows me to look back and realize I need to just put things in perspective and be thankful we have food to eat. Be thankful Jim is able to take Frances to violin. Be thankful he is able to eat on his own. Expecting to be able to simply heat up a plate of food versus finding out half the plate was eaten long ago takes a moment to sink in. Sometimes I need those moments to come quickly and leave swiftly to allow me space to reflect and be grateful instead of spiteful.  But life happens in split seconds and there is no slowing down real time and there is no taking back words or feelings or thoughts of despair.

Hurt. Even though I know this disease is ravaging Jim’s mind and taking the real Jim away from me, it doesn’t stop some things from hurting. It hurts when your spouse no longer thinks you will need to eat when you get home. It hurts when the kids tell him they love him and he shows little reaction. It hurts when something wonderful happens in our life and he no longer gets excited. It hurts when he doesn’t seem to care how we are paying the bills. It hurts even more to look at him and wonder if he still gets it? Does he understand the turmoil and angst that shrouds our home at times?

It hurts to want desperately to be held and shown love and instead, to feel alone and exiled.

I am grateful for two healthy children. I am grateful for a home and food to eat. I am grateful I have a job. I am grateful for my friends and my family. I am not grateful this disease has come into our lives and given me those things that I will have to one day look back on as “blessings in disguise”. I am not grateful to become an advocate for such a horrid disease. I am not grateful that I am able but necessitated to make all the decisions in our lives. I haven’t gotten there yet. I haven’t gotten to the look back point where what I see is a piece of life to smile about and be grateful for.  Life is a hard road to travel, but someone has gotta do it. Might as well be me.

posted by Karen in Early Signs of Alzheimer's,Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Uncategorized,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (7)

Anticipatory Grief

 

Brad, heading to pre-school. Sept. 2006

Brad, heading to pre-school. Sept. 2006

I am always depressed when the kids go back to school. Whether I am working full time out of the house or working as a full time Mom, the feeling is the same. It is a sign of time passing, a reminder we didn’t get everything in over the summer that I had hoped and planned to and the start of another year of pushing them further out of the house.

Jim is now the stay at home Dad and he gets to spend a lot more time with the kids than I do. For that, I am jealous of him. That used to be me and when I was fortunate enough to be home with them I don’t think I appreciated it the way I should have.

It seems to be a human inclination: you never appreciate what you have until it is gone.

The torturous part about this whole Alzheimer’s journey is the knowing what is coming. So I KNOW I should be appreciating what stage Jim is in now: knowing it will only get worse. I tell myself daily not to think too far ahead (which is very difficult for me not to do). Yet at the same time, I can’t focus on the past because I will then compare the new Jim with the old Jim and that isn’t fair or healthy.  So I am trying to concentrate on the present. Talk about a difficult task. Staying only in the present is almost impossible for me while raising a family. I am not supposed to think of how bad it is going to be or comparatively speaking how good it was.  My natural inclination is to be positive and upbeat. Some days I am not sure my natural inclinations shine through.

Frances, first day of kindergarten. Sept. 2006.

Frances, first day of kindergarten. Sept. 2006.

How do you deal with the NOW, plan for what you know is coming and appreciate how good life is right at this moment? As if I don’t have enough on my plate, I have to figure all of my emotional right and wrongs out as well.

Recently I received a wonderful message from someone very special. Someone I have known a long time who lost her own mother to ALS/Lou Gehrig’s Disease. I would like to take just a moment to let you know what a truly wonderful person her Mom was. I have never  met a person so honest, loving and just one of a kind. Her smile radiated happiness and love and she never had a bad thing to say about anyone. Ever. I am so glad I met her and I often think back to conversations we had or to her smile and contemplate how I handle things versus how she handled things. The last visit we had before she passed away was one full of laughs, even though she was unable to speak or move. Her eyes. For the first time in my life I could actually see someone laugh with their eyes. You read this in novels all the time, but I have never been able to read someone’s eyes. Until that day with her. I saw love, happiness and laughter in her eyes. She was leaving behind 3 beautiful daughters and it was heartbreaking. But her attitude made it so much easier for those that loved her and cared about her. I want to be able to do the same for Jim and those that care so deeply about us.

This is an excerpt from the e-mail I received:

… I went to a shrink for a while and he taught me the phrase ‘anticipatory grief’ which is exactly what it sounds like. You know what’s coming (somewhat) and in gearing up for what’s ahead you find yourself feeling the things that you think you will feel down the road. Basically mourning someone when they’re still around. I know this doesn’t really help but it’s a name for it, anyways. And in a way it helped me beat myself up less for being so depressed because I understood what I was feeling a little more and it was easier to be at peace with it.


So, I am sharing this with all of you in the hopes that you will love yourself a little more and in the process I will love myself a little more.

Frances and Brad first day of 7th and 4th grades. Sept. 2013.

Frances and Brad first day of 7th and 4th grades. Sept. 2013.

posted by Karen in Early Signs of Alzheimer's,Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Uncategorized,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (6)

Speak and Share

Friendship

No matter whether it is time, money, youth, health, family, friends, a career; we never seem satisfied or happy with our lives. We always want more or want what we perceive others to have. Please notice the word “perceive”.

Sometimes you can see someone and think they have it all. They have a nice house, a nice car, a nice job and maybe even the perfect family. But, most of the time, there is some sort of issue, problem, dilemma, or crisis that no one sees, even those closest to them.

Sharing our “crisis” with the world has been a blessing in many ways. Part of the benefit of sharing our story, is hearing stories from so many others from around the world. When I read other stories, I know I am not alone in many thoughts and feelings I have. I know my children are not alone. I have made new friends I don’t think I would have ever met or gotten close to otherwise. Such irony. I know that I am making a difference to people. I know that our story, our hurt, our trials and tribulations will benefit someone, somewhere. And sometimes that has to be enough to push me through another day.

There are times I will be chatting with a friend and they apologize to me for burdening me with their troubles. Although I understand why they do this, it makes me feel uncomfortable. Am I that on edge that I can’t handle hearing about someone else’s life? Am I that shallow? Am I that fragile?

I want to hear about your day and what you really think about your boss and your husband and your kids and your neighbor and our government and the school system and environmental issues. I want to have that sense of belonging and normalcy that comes with the give and take of a friendship. You tell me your woes and I tell you mine. It goes both ways. Seriously, one of my favorite things in life is to talk. And listen. And talk. And listen. I love conversations and hearing other peoples’ stories and sharing mine. I can do it for hours.

When no one talks to you, the world gets much smaller. You become isolated and alone. Talk. Listen. Share. Care. Hug. Laugh. Cry.

We all have the same emotions and the same life problems. Mine are out here for the world to see. I now know by sharing my burdens and troubles, many others don’t feel so alone, which in turn helps me feel connected and not so alone. So, if you have a friend or family member that is going through a rough patch in life, keep the communication lines going both ways. Please do not just ask them how they are and then have that awkward silence when it is your turn to share. All of this being said, you also don’t need to give them a 30 minute dissertation on every single problem you have had; especially if it involves getting sand in the wrong places while vacationing in the Caribbean or how long the lines were skiing the slopes of the Alps. Please use good judgement.

I get a certain comment all the time, “You write what I am feeling but I can’t say it to anyone because they won’t understand.”  I think the reason so many of us feel like we won’t be understood is because people tend to judge. We tend to judge based on what we believe others should be doing or what they should be feeling. Who are any of us to know these things? Each family has their own story, their own best way of dealing with it and we should all accept the mantra,” they are doing they best they can.” Period.

I learned a long time ago; the minute I say I would never do that or my kids would never do that is the minute I set into motion for that very thing to happen.

That doesn’t mean I don’t sometimes start down that path of judging. I do try to catch myself. Do you?

So, let your friends share, vent, open up with honest thoughts and feelings. Then let them know you still care, you still love them and you have stuff going on in your life too. Then let them hear all about it so they don’t have to think about only their crap. It is nice to hear other peoples’ lives aren’t perfect sometimes. Remember the adage “Misery Loves Company”? This world has a lot of sadness and a lot of  hurt and anger and injustice. No need to add to it. Instead, try to add a bit of love and understanding. It might just make your world a little brighter too.

posted by Karen in Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Uncategorized,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (4)

Checks and Balances

 

Jim and Me, May 2013.

Jim and Me, May 2013.

“You are overthinking. Just not KFC.”

This was a text from a friend I was going to meet for lunch recently. This simple, short, to the point communication shouted out to me something that has been under the surface for a long time.

I really miss the part of my relationship with Jim that keeps me in check. Jim was always very good at letting me be me. He was also there to reel me in when I started going down the wrong path or if I just wasn’t living up to my potential. He was the type of husband I needed; a man that would give me room and at the same time keep me within the boundaries I needed to stay. It is only recently that I have realized that I am having to monitor myself and keep myself accountable. My safety net isn’t always going to be there to catch me and keep me from falling.

Not that he isn’t still a great husband, but I have noticed that he really doesn’t seem to have an opinion about much lately. Living with someone that doesn’t seem to care one way or the other can become pretty lonely. It used to bother me how much space and room Jim gave me. I had watched too many romance movies and read too many romance books. But as I matured, I came to realize what a blessing it was to have a man that let me be true to myself and who loved me, as I was, without trying to change me.

I wouldn’t call myself a wild child, but the term has been used before. On the other hand, Jim has always been very black and white and by the book. Those traits were one of the reasons he was an outstanding member of the US Air Force. During our early years of marriage Jim would give me the space I needed.  I would go out with my friends or get involved in something new and exciting. But when it was time for me to slow down and spend time with him, he let me know. It took some time for us to work out a good system and exactly what our roles were in our marriage. For a couple of years, we seemed to have a good marital system down.

Reading that text reminded me that I don’t really have anyone keeping me focused, balanced and in line. It is more than not having a partner in the decision making process; it is not having the person you didn’t want to disappoint or let down beside you. It is having some crazy idea about something around the house or with the finances and not having your better half to either agree or disagree with the notion. Or come up with a better solution.

I tend to overthink and over analyze. Conversations. Plans. How to spend money or not to spend money. What to do around the house. What to do about situations that arise with the kids. I lay in bed agonizing over decisions and wondering if I am making a mistake or if I hurt someone’s feelings or if I could have done something better. Jim was my go- to person to listen, comment and advise to help me work through whatever it was I was contemplating.

About 3 or 4 months ago I realized I no longer even discuss most things with him because it either confuses him or frustrates me when he doesn’t remember the conversation or comes back with some crazy, off the wall comment that didn’t relate to what I was talking about.

Part of being lonely in a house full of people is feeling isolated and distant. I think Jim must feel the same way. I have asked him but he says he feels loved and he always has something to keep him busy so he isn’t lonely. He just focuses on his lists. Every once in a while I will push a little harder and dig a little deeper. And that is when it hurts. Hurts to see his tears and see his lip quiver as he tells me he isn’t scared but he doesn’t want to think about what is happening and what is going to happen. He knows. As always, he is still disciplined enough to not think about something that will bother him. This is one trait that I always wished I had of his. I still do.

It is hard to imagine that he doesn’t notice the change in our relationship or the dynamic that has shifted in our family. He must.

I miss the part of Jim that could stand up to me and tell me what he really thought. I miss the part of Jim that could have a serious conversation, going back and forth with our own personal opinions. I miss the funny, light side of Jim that could make me laugh and make me feel so special and so beautiful. I miss having a partner that I could count on to keep our family on the right path and help me be the best Mom and wife and person I could be.

I don’t trust myself to do this without him.

posted by Karen in Early Signs of Alzheimer's,Early Stages of Alzheimer's Disease,Uncategorized,Younger Onset Alzheimer's Disease and have Comments (7)