Faith Hope and Love, are the cornerstones to seeing God's love with your heart!
I am a 50+ year old wife, a mom to 5 beautiful children, two dogs along with being a grandmother to four, four- legged, furry, barking cuties! I am also a teacher that has been honored to teach some of the most affluent children in my area. I then switched demographics and have been humbled by teaching some of the most impoverished and violent stricken children in my state! My life has been simple. I have lived through happiness, pain, joy and depression. Through it all, I have been surrounded by love! This love, no matter the circumstance has taught me how to see His love using my heart, not my eyes!
My writing is never meant to insult or hurt anyone with Alzheimer’s. I am showing unedited honesty mixed with love. There will be many tears, frustration and even anger. Don’t worry, there is going to be a lot of laughter also. If you can’t find humor, you will only live with pain! I want everyone following us to walk away with a merry heart amidst the sorrow. (Proverbs 17:22) I will share it all from my eyes and the eyes of family and friends.
Yesterday (7/2/19) I got to join mom and her friends for dinner. Mom may struggle with language and memory, but her creative gene still rules! Mom had been given mandarin oranges for dessert (She is down to 115 lbs.and is sitting in the dining room where nurses closely monitor the amount of food she is eating. We do not want her loosing any more weight!). She decided orange juice would be better. She was not waiting for anyone to bring her some. Instead she mixed the oranges with her left over water and happily ‘drank’ every bite even after complaining that the oranges were ‘gross’!
Our dinner companions were fun in their own right! The lady to my right felt that shoes were not important! I tend to agree! 🙂PS: The picture looks awful. Except for the toenail, her feet were fine. She was using her toes to scratch her bottom foot!
After eating, mom enjoys walking. I took her outside for some fresh air. We sat down so I could show her pictures that her friends from all over the world have been sending (Thank you Patricia and Donna). Mom’s frustration in recognizing the ladies, but not being able to say their names became apparent. I turned the pictures off and took a selfie! Mom was much happier because she recognized herselfand kept saying, ‘That is me!”
Mom and Ali arrived in Charleston, SC on June 7, 2019. It was her final destination and going to become her permanent home! Mom was wheeled into the airport looking frail, frazzled and exhausted! She was not making much sense as she tried to communicate except when I asked her if she knew who I was? Her snappy response, “Of course I do Lisa,” let me know I had insulted her! Maybe I shouldn’t have smiled, but I did! Mom was still there!
It has been two years since my sister and I had last seen mom (LeAnn). The decline in her memory and speech was shocking! Her husband had been in close contact with me. His honesty, along with my reading everything I could on Alzheimer’s, had my brain educated and prepared. Nothing could have prepared my heart!
The first night back in my home proved to be challenging. I knew the jet-lag, due to the 22 hour flight from Kuwait was playing havoc on mom’s mental state. Yet, I had to admit, there was more! Alzheimer’s was boldly introducing itself to me! Mom was agitated and kept wandering. The doors had to be monitored because she kept trying to escape! My 12 year old son asked me if he could sleep with his bedroom door locked because grandma kept barging in. That had not been her room for over 5 years, but that was the room she kept returning to! She took her frustrations out on me and Ali. (At one point she told me I was stupid!) Luckily, she had always been close with my husband, so Richard was able to provide her security.
Around 9 PM, mom was fed and ready for bed! To say I was relieved was an understatement! I needed peace and quiet to process the day! I know there will be good days mixed with bad days. Patience will be tested as tears flow! Alzheimer’s is robbing all of us of the wife, mom, daughter, sister, aunt and friend we once knew. One thing Alzheimer’s will not rob LeAnn of is the unconditional love surrounding her! She has a ‘village’ that extends worldwide! These friends and family embrace LeAnn, no matter her condition! This is not the journey I expected life to take us on, but God did! My Faith and trust are in Him, no matter the road ahead!
Welcome to my journal blog. As you read my entries, you will enter into the days I share with my husband, children, parents (understanding and living with my mom’s diagnosis of Alzheimer’s) dogs, family, friends and work. Through my writings you will experience my good, bad, challenging, exciting, frustrating, joyous, sad and angry. No matter the adjective used, when seen with your heart, there is always His love to experience. Find a comfy chair or location and join me on my journey called life!
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes. – Marcel Proust