I decided to ask my eldest a few questions about what thoughts Lyn and her Alzheimer's provokes. My child was as blunt as ever and I've copied down the thoughts that were shared with me. Here are the thoughts from the perspective of a young teen:
"I think Aunt Lyn's Alzheimer's is tough on her and everyone around her. She doesn't always comprehend what is happening or why it is happening. She also doesn't understand what people are saying.
It's an annoyance because we have to treat her like a child. We have to use smaller words even in contexts that should be easy to understand. We have to deal with her mood swings or the fall out from the mood swings. Her moods and demands tear Grandma down.
I think of Aunt Lyn as another sibling who you have to be extremely understanding around. I've always felt like she's been more of a cousin or sibling because she never could take a role of authority."
I've never asked before and I'm glad I finally did. It helps me to understand another's perspective and to realize just how much patience this young person is trying to show when interacting with my sister. It is not easy and our visits to Mom and Lyn's is very much centered around things we know Lyn can handle instead of traveling and seeing a new thing every day.
While my child understands the limits and tries to be patient, I appreciate that kiddo felt comfortable expressing annoyance. In return, I thanked kiddo for the conversation and honest expression of thoughts and emotions.