As I think I have mentioned before, at least I think I have, my diagnosis depends upon which doctor I listen to. A couple of years ago it seemed certain that I had Vascular Dementia, then a year later with lots of tests, the words I remember were Stage I Alzheimer’s. Now after a review by a very well respected local physician with lots of background in all of this, the words used are now Mild Cognitive Impairment.
Understand that my degrees are in history and political Science, not in anything medical or scientific at all. Therefore I am in no position to second-guess any doc, I am however the person who lives with it, whatever “it” is. I am told that ALZ tends to track a straight downward path and that vascular dementia tends to go down like a stair step. What I feel like is that I decline most days, but not all, by about 1% or maybe a little less. On a monthly basis, I truly notice the decline. A month ago, I had no trouble putting in passwords and getting into certain web sites, now a number, not all, but a number, are just not there. I can’t seem to work through the simple process of going to a web site, getting the name and the password correct. I am totally befuddled, if, as happened yesterday, the web site changed or asks me for added info. I have found a solution to this problem and that is either my wife or other family members, all excellent at technology, review every thing I do on my computer. In the world we live in today with scammers and criminal tech wizards around every corner, I recommend this course of action to everyone who has any form of dementia. Not doing this may cost you a lot.
I am also glad that spring is here, or at least just around the corner because enjoying being out in nature has become a more important thing to me.
The other evening, we had some staff from the Alzheimer’s Association and another couple (with the husband having the disease) over for dinner. Personally I really enjoyed it. I love to cook and was able to prepare some pretty good dishes. My soufflés did not rise as much as I wanted but my Cioppino (a fancy name for a fish stew) turned out great.
My word to those afflicted with any form of dementia is stay active and socially engaged with friends and family. Staying busy is critical. Go to ALZ meetings, do whatever you can to keep going. Above all, and I know for many this is hard, don’t deny what you have, but at the same time don’t let it encompass you.