How a cake revealed my husband was still driving after I took away the car keys.
Everybody keeps telling me I need to take care of myself. I've even mentioned it in previous blog posts. But I didn't realize how vulnerable I was until Tuesday, August 20. I was enjoying a very short break between teaching a demanding summer class and what will be a tough, long fall semester with a full … Continue reading A Wakeup Call if you’re a caregiver….
August 13, 2013 By Samra Jones Bufkins I think of that Robert Earl Keen song every time I remember "It's the little things." Of course, his song addresses completely different issues, but you get the idea, especially when you hear the last line of the chorus. And dealing with dementia means the little things add up. Original image from … Continue reading It’s The Little Things….
On Tuesday we ventured back down to UTSW Medical School in Dallas, specifically to the Memory Clinic, for another evaluation for Bill. A year ago when we made this trip he drove, and I was holding out hope the problems with his memory and confusion were normal pressure hydrocephalus. After an MRI, blood tests, neuropsychological testing and a thorough evaluation … Continue reading The Less He Remembers, the More I Know
Last night I joined a couple hundred ladies for a short “women’s conference” at my church. I really didn’t want to be there—I’m still grading papers, even at the end of spring break, laundry is undone and the house is a shambles—but the title was “Mary or Martha? Responding to Christ in Your Life.” I had … Continue reading Warm Fruit Soup and The Better Part
This semester I teach until 6:30 on Wednesday evenings, but try to get home to go to 7:00 Mass and Adoration. Bill likes to attend a class at the church that begins around 7:30. It works well for us—I get a couple of hours of peace and quiet alone, he gets some fellowship with friends, … Continue reading The Power and the Glory of Caregiving
I have a bunch of books on dealing with Alzheimer’s. Some I bought, others were given to me. I’ve thumbed through all of them, read parts of most of them, and have many websites bookmarked as well. I’m no expert, but I’m moving out of the denial phase, although I’m still mad as Hell about this disease that’s taking … Continue reading Self-Sufficiency, Faith and Home Repair
I've never been good at asking for help. I'm the one who usually jumps in to help or lend an ear when someone's suffering. So dealing with the progression of Bill's dementia--and all that comes with it--has been a journey. I haven't had time to get involved with the Alzheimer's Association, but I know I need … Continue reading Friends are the family you choose
Alzheimer's and dementia are apparently unpredictable. My husband Bill can remember details from his childhood, from college classes, from our travels years ago that I find amazing. But he can't remember whether I'm having a glass of red or white wine when he asks me if I want a refill. And he brings the refill in … Continue reading Plumbing the Mind of an Alzheimer’s Patient
They haven't used the "A" word yet, but.... Looking back, I should have seen it coming. The inability to put things back where they belonged. Forgetting what I just said to him. Repeating himself. But he'd always been a little ADD, a little forgetful, so I blew it all off. My husband Bill was a lot … Continue reading The Long Goodbye