I'm getting this issue written up on Friday the 13th. I'm sitting here at my computer while I wait for all my family to arrive for Mama's Family Christmas. I've got approximately 3 hours before the first group arrives. I've got cornbread in the oven and giblets boiling in order to get a head start on tomorrow's Christmas feast.
I've been doing a lot of thinking lately as I've been going about getting ready for Christmas this year. I've been up and I've been down. This is the first year that I've had such conflicting emotions.
Christmas has always been my most favorite time of the year. This year I've spent some days crying. I am usually singing carols all over the place and this year has been fairly quiet. Too many things are going through my mind.
As I was wrapping presents and I put one item in a gift bag, I remembered how Nanny kept trying to peek into her presents last year. My great friend, Linda (PHOTOLJT), told me to put one item of Nanny's into a gift bag and place it at the front. I had such a good time watching Nanny's enjoyment as she got to peek into one of her presents time and time again. That made me smile and cry at the same time.
Farther down in this issue will be a note that Carole wrote in answer to a lady who Lives with Dementia and is not feeling the Christmas spirit this year. Carole had such good suggestions. I plan to embark on some of these things next year.
After Nanny and Grandmother had died, my good friend, Dean sent me a great link called "When I Need To Fall Apart". I will put it in the LINKS section. It is a great poem that lets us know that it's ok and that we will be ok.
I know that once my siblings and their families get here, some of this hurt will ease and I will once again be my happy self. I love my sister and my brothers. They have helped me so much just by keeping in touch.
Remember.......there is no Present
That slogan can be found on many of the items in our Caregiver's Store(Link: http://www.theribbon.com/carestore/ )!
Shop Online! - TheRibbon.com(Link: http://www.theribbon.com/shop/ )
I hope you and your's have a Save and Joyous Holiday!!
Before I Forget: The PWiD's Perspective
Carole wrote this in answer to Mary who shared with the DASNI mail list that she wasn't feeling the Christmas Spirit. Mary mispelled spirit and it came out sprite and Carole loved it.
LOL, I like the idea of a Christmas "sprite!" You can be one yourself, you know. The spirit of Christmas is in the giving, so let's give! Here's a plan:
We with dementia simply have to try a little bit harder to continue to contribute.
Happy Holidays, Mary,
DASNI: Dementia Advocacy and Support Network International(Link: http://www.dasninternational.org/ )
by Mary C. Fridley RN, C
No one is ever ready to make the heart wrenching decision to move a loved one from home to assisted living. But the time may come when it's necessary not only for your loved one's good but yours.
I'm frequently asked how to find the "right" assisted living facility. I caution caregivers by saying that the right facility for someone may be the wrong facility for your loved one. What is pleasing and important for one can be distasteful and unimportant to another. Also keep in mind that it will not be "home", so some adjustments and acquiesces must be made. You should also be aware that there are many styles and sizes of facilities out there. Some are large accommodating 16 or more residents, while others house as few as three. Some look and feel like hotels, while others are very home-like. When seeking an Assisted Living Facility always use your loved one's preferences as a guide, not yours. Knowing your loved one's life style and what appeals to his or her senses will make the search easier. However, there are some important things to look for when "shopping":
Keep your loved one involved in the decision-making after-all it will be his or her home.
Remember that staff can't replace the love and attention of family. Most important, remember that your role as a caregiver doesn't end. You may need to be his or her eyes, ears, and mouth, so don't be afraid to speak up and advocate for your loved one's care.
Blessings for a happy holiday season.
Mary C. Fridley RN, C is a Registered Nurse board certified in gerontology with more than twenty years experience in the geriatric health field. She provides community workshops and motivational seminars on caregiver, eldercare, and aging issues as well as writes articles and caregiver advice columns for websites and publications. Mary will be glad to answer any questions you have and can be reached at P.O. Box 573 Riva, MD 21140, or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org (email@example.com).
From CGlaughter@aol.com (Chip Gerber)
Creating a Calming Environment [PDF format](Link: http://www.alzheimers.asn.au/PDFFiles/HelpSheetsTh eEnvironmentAndDementia/Creating%20a%20calming%20e nvironment.pdf )
From Datel123@aol.com (Dean Datel)
When I Need To "Fall Apart"(Link: http://morningspiritliftjuly.homestead.com/01.html )
We don't always have to be strong
From CAREVOICE@aol.com (Brenda Avadian)
I spent a little over an hour searching the WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION's (WHO) website for this statistic.
Sometime ago, I saw the statistic that 18 million people worldwide have Alzheimer's....that's 7 million more than the 11 million worldwide estimated by the American Alzheimer's Association in 1998.
Attached is a two-page MS Word document (Click here to view(Link: http://www.who.int/archives/whday/whd2001/others/N ori%20Graham%20(Alzheimer)%20statement%20WHD%20200 1.en.doc )) presented for the WHO's World Health Day in April 2001 that states that the Alzheimer's Disease International cites 18 million due to most of the aging population being ignored or excluded because, quite frankly, they are old. And until more people are educated about this disease, sadly this will be the case...loved ones in other countries will be institutionalized in similar facilities we used to use in the 40s through the early 70s here in the US--sanitariums, mental institutions.
Note the English use of "s" for recognised and other words instead of the "z" and also the use of "carers" (more frequently used in Europe) for caregivers (more frequently used in the US), and ageing (Europe) instead of aging (US).
Please feel free to share with others.