As time goes by

I’ve been remiss in writing for the past month. The reasons being unexpected work (which is good) and a monetary self-consciousness (which is bad) about what I’ve been blogging and posting these last eighteen months or so.

I’d been blogging more or less as I’ve kept my journal for decades now; un-self conscious and un-varnished, pretty much the truth of my experience (as I see it, of course), without thought (not much anyway) of tone, ramifications or implications.

Funny how with a little time and distance you can look at something and suddenly see it in a completely different light (kinda like putting on that swim-suit that you got on sale in the off season and now that it’ll soon be summer you put it for the first time and wonder-what was I thinking?).

I made the mistake of re-reading some of my old posts and felt suddenly naked and very exposed (except for that swim-suit of course;) Well, I won’t be doing that again (reading that is-not writing). I’m not going to start editing myself or over thinking what I write-I mean, what would be the point if I did that? No, I’ll just continue to move forward in print and leave the looking back to others.

Since my last post I’ve taken Miss Cathy to her neurologist and to her primary care physician for her regularly scheduled check-ups. They both gave her glowing reports. She did better on the neurologists’ memory and cognitive skill’s tests than she’s ever done before and other than gaining a little weight, her health is better than ever, too.

Dr Aleymayehu, her neurologist explained (once again when she asked about her medication) that the Aricept she’s taking is not a “cure” but it “delays” the Alzheimer’s patient from progressing in the disease. Since she was diagnosed so early moms’ pretty much frozen in time with most of her wits about her so Miss Cathy is one of the lucky ones.

Sure, she still has some confusion, she still has anger issues and some days she gets overwhelmed when there are too many things going on. But, lets face it; those things are all manageable considering what others who are further along in the disease are experiencing

With her doing so much better I can understand why she keeps asking the doctor about the Aricept and what it’s suppose to be doing to help her. We know (well, I know) that Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease and it has no specific timeline of deterioration so it’s possible that Miss Cathy could be the way she is now for years to come. So, it’ all wonderful news but “what’s a caregiver to do?”

Lately I feel I have less purpose here. The first year was all about getting her acclimated to her (and my) new life and for some time she really seemed to struggle with the “day to day” and needed a lot of hands on care. And I was good at helping with that.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I want (or need her to be sick) it’s just that my days had purpose when she needed me and every day seemed to be a re-affirmation of my decision to leave my life to come join hers.

As time has gone by she’s more independent (compared to where she was after her fall in January of 2010) and has more days where she’s cleared headed and functioning like she had before her diagnosis (albeit slower than before).

She needs me less and I (feel anyway) like I’ve gone from caregiver to reluctant roommate. Or like I’m trapped in some vortex where it’s ten years ago and I’m on a visit home to see my mom but the visit never ends.

I hate to be a “Debbie downer” but I have to ask, “why am I still here?”