When Mother first talked about moving in with me, I really thought I would be getting a roommate. It quickly became obvious that this was not the case. Having lived less than a year in Kerrville, I knew few people and had few supports outside one niece and the people I knew from work. Fortunately, I came across the Yahoo group dementiarescue.
Dementia Rescue is an online message board for those who are seeking support for dealing with various forms of dementia such as Alzheimer’s Disease, Vascular Dementia, Pick’s Disease and Frontal Temporal Lobe Disease. This is a site that welcomes any and all who are seeking to educate themselves about dementia, whether it be the individual with dementia, or family members.
It currently has 834 members, and while I don’t actively monitor posts anymore, the mutual support of others who found themselves in situations similar to mine helped me keep my sanity through that first 18 months, as I adjusted to my new situation and the lethargic, apathetic person that my savvy, energetic mother had somehow morphed into.
Here is my message to the group from January 20, 2008:
I put in a walking exercise DVD Thursday morning, in the hopes that she would do it with me – do SOMETHING besides sit on the couch staring at the television.She did little shuffling steps (at my insistence) for maybe 2 minutes, then said she was tired and sat down. And when I say sit on the couch, most of the time, it’s lie down on the couch.This is the woman that worked 20 hours per week at the grocery store up until last March! And up until about a year before that, she worked 35 hours per week!It’s like watching her slide down a hill that she doesn’t seem to realize or care that she’s on and having no way to stop her.