My mom has opened my heart to a world filled with love & compassion. After she became ill she blossomed into this beautiful flower with a breath of fresh air.
Although I can no longer speak to my mom every day, I awake each morning thinking of her smile and how she maneuvers around the nursing home sharing words of love.
She has become like a Buddha as she spreads joy to the aides, nurses and some of the other residents who also have Alzheimer's.
As upsetting as this disease can be it also fascinates me. I have watched as it has crept into my mother's life, removing what once existed in her universe. Now I watch as she retreats into a "new"world.
I cannot help but wonder how Alzheimer's destroys some cells quicker than others, and why some people have it for years, while others succumb to it so quickly?
What magical quality does the sound of music have to those who have this disease? I have witnessed as they come to life when they hear the melodies . I have watched when my mother interacts with those who no longer speak and I see how they look at her as they utter several words.
What makes some of their memories come to the surface while others disappear? Why does my mom think her home is with her parents? Does she go back to a time and place when she felt safe and secure? Does the world she now lives in frighten her, only wanting to return to her childhood home?
Do we think that in some ways our loved ones no longer exist and that they cannot hear our voices? Do we stop trying to communicate to them? For me I do believe that they do not disappear. I believe that even when we may think so that they are still listening.
With all of this being said, then how can we deal with our loved ones who now suffer from Alzheimer's? Can we, as caregivers, understand that maybe all they want is to be loved?
This is what people with Alzheimer's have demonstrated to me. They are no different than all of us for they have taught me about the power of love. They, as well as my mom, have shown me that love is all that matters.
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