Friday, March 2, 2012

Conversations with a Neighbor

There is a lady who lives just a couple of doors down from Mom and Lyn.  She's a lovely person who drops by to chat from time to time.  Thursday morning, as Mom and Lyn headed out to go to day hab, they encountered this neighbor and invited her along.  She took them up on the offer since Mom was going to come right back home after dropping Lyn off.

On the way home, the neighbor took the opportunity of unsupervised conversation to inquire about Lyn.  She said she has noticed over the last couple of months how Lyn struggles with her speech.  To her, Lyn seems slower to verbalize and frequently doesn't finish a sentence.  She's right.  I've noticed this as well.  I've also noticed that Lyn speaks at a higher volume and is emphatic in more of her statements.

The neighbor witnessed the drop off and saw Lyn's confusion.  She had brought her bowling bag.  When they arrived at the day hab facility, Mom asked if Lyn was going bowling.  Lyn didn't know.  Mom suggested Lyn go in and ask and "Take your bowling bag with you."  Lyn looked confused.  She got out of the car, went in and came running back out for her bag.  She did need it just as Mom suggested she might.  Seeing this exchange is what caused the neighbor to speak with Mom about it on the way home.

It is interesting to me how others are seeing the changes in Lyn, how they notice the differences from the patterns of behavior they are used to seeing from her.

Lyn did go bowling as her activity with day hab and scored a 120.  Later in the afternoon, she was scheduled for bowling with her respite provider.  They are seeing the respite provider much less than they used to because Lyn no longer wants to go to the Tuesday night social activity and is exhausted for her time at day hab.


After bowling for the second time of the day, Lyn was so tired that her respite provider brought her home an hour early.  In the hour and a half between bowling and the return home, they got a bite to eat and Lyn forgot her scores.  Good thing they bring them home on paper each week.

Despite the fatigue and the lapse of her short-term memory, it was still a good day for Lyn.

2 comments:

  1. Days like this make me sad.

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  2. I understand the feeling, kind reader. One of the hardest things about watching someone you love change because of their dementia is all the moments of grief we find ourselves feeling. When a person dies, we feel our grief intensely and can adjust to our new reality without that person beside us. With dementia, we grieve, adjust to our loved one's new reality and settle in. It is then that we are faced once again with our feeling of grief as we adjust to more changes.

    However, I will counter that from Lyn's perspective, it was a good day. And, that is important.

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