GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 28
caring for our parents and other loved ones
Bob refused to walk with a cane, stay off the stairs or
quit driving. He fell often, thankfully not on the stairs.
After three car accidents, the state required he take
a driving test. No one was hurt in the accidents, but
totaled one of our cars. Of course, he failed the test.
I'd already been doing all the driving when we traveled together. He only drove for a few errands to the
grocery store, fitness center and drugstore - all within
a three-mile radius. Still, a revoked driver's license hit
him hard. I now drove him wherever he wanted to go. I
quit all my social activities to care for him.
Some lessons I learned
* Avoid arguments. Dementia leaves a patient with
little age appropriate reasoning ability.
* Rather than argue, distract. Point out something that takes his mind away from the present
* Let someone else be the bad guy, ie, license taken
* White lies are okay. Make it easy on yourself.
* Monitor your voice. A cheerful voice and countenance, even if you are angry, results in a positive
* Ignore most people's advice. Unless they have
walked in your shoes, don't let them tell you what
* Avoid the word "remember." Instead, relate an
incident or look at a photograph and see if a
memory is triggered.
* If he tries to talk and you don't understand, pick
one word you do understand and say anything
using that word.
* Ask few open ended questions.
Instead, word the question so it
requires a definite answer.
* Get help. Hire in-home care,
even if only a few hours, to relieve
yourself of 24/7 care.
* Take over the finances before a
* Join a support group. It is
Time to choose
I barely slept for two years.
"Mom," said our youngest son, "you've
aged ten years in one. I know you believe
'until death us do part' but you're going
to make yourself sick and not be able
to care for Dad." He researched several
facilities and finally insisted we visit them
together with Bob. Without Bob's knowledge, I put a deposit at one.
After an awful night of no sleep, I explained that if
Mind challenging activities
I didn't get more sleep, I'd end up sick and then who
Once Bob could no longer read, I purchased "Joggin' would take care of him. Bob chose to move to a care
Your Noggin" books. He and the in-home caregiver
facility. He wanted to move immediately. He picked
(Morgan) read them and answered all the questions.
out pictures, furniture and suggested he move the
I bought large piece puzzles and put them together next Saturday. Not possible, of course. The boys and I
first. I collected all the edges and placed them in one
chose memory care rather than assisted living since his
baggie. Then divided the puzzle into four sections and decline seemed fast. We admitted him the day before
stored each in separate baggies. He refused to work
my birthday, November, 2016.
them with me but loved doing them with Morgan.
Children's books offered information on a level Bob
Click here to continue reading
could understand. We read together.
Decks of cards with pictures to match provided
another challenging activity. Games on an IPod or
tablet granted more challenges, if the person can be
To help other care partners, Linda Osmundtrained to use the tablet.
son, an award winning children's book author is publishing a picture book called Papa's
Our photo albums reminded both of us of good
Changes. A granddaughter copes with her
times from the past. For Bob's Christmas gift, I gave
grandfather's decline by adjusting her activities with him and keeping their love alive. The
each son an album to fill with pictures of his family. My
book will be released in the fall, 2019. Watch
husband loved to look at them.
for pre-orders on Amazon.
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 1
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 2
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 3
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - Contents
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 5
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 6
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 7
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 8
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 9
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 10
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 11
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 12
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 13
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 14
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 15
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 16
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 17
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 18
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 19
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 20
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 21
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 22
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 23
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 24
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 25
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 26
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 27
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 28
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 29
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 30
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 31
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 32
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 33
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 34
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 35
GRAND Magazine - July/August 2019 - 36