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What is dementia? When I started our blog about 4 1/2 years ago, my intent was to share funny stories about living with my parents and grandparents as well as some of our home renovations, projects and tutorials. My grandparent’s health was pretty good then and everything just seemed to chug along. I have shared lots of stories about my grandfather and recently more so about his diabetes issues. We seem to have gotten that under control for the time being. Fingers crossed it stays that way! It’s kind of a drag watching a loved one’s health decline. My mom’s mom also lived with us a few years ago and her dementia started in her late 80’s and was severe when she died at 92 years old. Like, she wouldn’t even go to the bathroom on her own. It was like she was a toddler. I pray my grandparents or parents never get that bad when they get older. One thing I haven’t really talked about is the fact that my grandfather is showing more and more signs of dementia. I mean, it’s kind of inevitable. He is going to be 87 years old this September so needless to say, his brain is old. There is a fine line I draw here on the blog about airing “dirty laundry” or “health issues” that would embarrass a family member or make them made at me. -ha. So I pick and chose wisely. Dementia though is something I feel that every person should be made aware of. I am sure many of you are well aware of the disease and the fact that many times, it comes on slowly and before you know it, it’s like a freight train ran your loved one over.
So I have decided to start a Dementia Diaries series on the blog. I am sure many of you have experiences with loved ones that have gone through dementia or alzheimer’s and probably have great advice. Sometimes it’s so easy to get wrapped up in your own life, I forget that we are not alone in this. We have so many loyal readers and so many of your emails have been super helpful over the last few years. I haven’t quite figured out all the details on dementia and alzheimer’s. Over the last year or so, my grandfather has been experiencing symptoms of alzheimer’s as well. If you talk to him later in the day or especially in the evening, he gets really mixed up and sometimes doesn’t know what day it is. It’s hard to say what’s causing what because when his sugar is really low, he’s a mess with his thoughts and low sugar is to blame. Anyway, I plan on researching more about these two topics and will be attempting to understand why they happen and things we can do to slow it down. I wish there was a switch that I could flip on and make him young again. It’s hard to watch him fail. Stay tuned, more on this subject soon. UPDATE: See, Getting old and losing your independence / Dementia Diaries part 2.